Artists Open Houses
A few half-way highlights

Would you believe it, we’re half way through the May festival of Artists’ Open Houses already, with one weekend of bad weather and one of sunshine under our belts. As a trail rep of Beyond the Level and an exhibitor therein, I’ve been covering much the same ground as in previous years (i.e. staying local and avoiding hills!), so this time I thought I’d share some of the things that genuinely attracted me. Like Harriet in the previous blog, I loved the Garden House (b9) off Warleigh Road. It’s a Tardis of a place, huge! They do lunches there amongst the chickens too, and I kicked off last weekend with a cauliflower and chickpea curry before exploring all the sheds and outbuildings full of goodies.

Brian Mander installation

Like Harriet I also visited Brian Mander’s installation For the love of Sarah: An equivalent mass at Harebell House, 1 Florence Road, Brighton (i23); and outside there is an Open Caravan with over 40 artists and makers exhibiting.

Julie at the Open Caravan

If you like installations and interventions (and there are plenty round town as part of the HOUSE 2012 festival), possibly the world’s smallest is in Tina Davies’s house (8 Rose Hill Terrace, b6) where Benedict Sheehan has a tiny projection of a house.

Benedict Sheehan

While you’re on the street pop along to Ian Brown’s House of Prints to see his spanking new studio full of his own collection (Eduardo Paolozzi, Robert Rauschenberg) but also of Del Querns, Colin Kennedy and Lisa Joffe - and get to see his fabulous collection of vintage juke boxes.

Lisa Joffe

At the other house with juke boxes (17 Clyde Road, b8), where I’m exhibiting, there are some amazing bargains to be had (no, not my oil paintings!). Ruth Burchard (1912-2009) was a highly regarded Danish studio potter, working in Hampstead and Farnham, who sold in places like Heal’s. Her son has brought some examples down to Brighton and many are selling for less than £10 - but once they’re gone they’re gone!

Curtis Tappenden

Up the road at the Dragonfly House b13 (this year curated by Marc Bonnel), Mark Oliver is selling off his wonderful pre-digital gouache illustrations also at bargain prices. These are original paintings, not prints, that can be had for just £10-20 each!

And so to a quick mention of cake! Plenty to be had at 99 Ditchling Rise b11, where you may even be served by blues guitarist John Crampton! And of course, Jo Riddell’s house on Florence Road b16, where Kate Helmer and her sister Siobhan make the most sublime lemon polenta cake!


[There are many more photos on Flickr]