Somerset Art Works and Visit Somerset have joined forces to increase exposure for the county’s artistic talent and stimulate increased business from visitors in a collaboration of an arts and tourism alliance.
Participants in this autumn’s Somerset Open Studios will benefit from having individual membership listings on the Visit Somerset website which attracts over one million visits a year.
Open Studios will run from 18 September until 3 October and is a continuation from the 2020 online version that will see a large increase in venues being open and accessible to visitors.
Paul Newman of Somerset Art Works told ArtCulture: “Somerset Art Works are thrilled to collaborate with Visit Somerset to promote the work of SAW members, the largest visual arts community in Somerset. We’re grateful for the opportunity this provides to members to promote their work, especially at this time, and how it helps them get their work seen in new and innovative ways.
“With around 300 artists normally taking part in the biennial Open Studios event, this is a great initiative to make the county’s cultural offer available to an ever wider and more diverse audience, helping make the county an even more sought-after cultural destination.”
Arts and tourism
Giles Adams, chair of Visit Somerset said: “Arts and culture is an integral part of how people choose to spend their leisure time. It brings economic benefit to creatives but also to hospitality providers, which is badly needed as part of business recovery as we progress through 2021.
“We are delighted to be working with Somerset Art Works who have been leading on the county’s visual art development for over 25 years.
Visual and performing arts
“Visit Somerset will be further developing a strategy for raising the profile to tourists of visual and performing arts across the county, lengthening stays here, extending the tourist season and overall visitor spend. We are very grateful for the support from a number of Somerset Local Authorities this year which in turn means that we can assist Somerset Art Works in some of their aims”.
Somerset Art Works member Sebastian Chance said: “This provides a welcome opportunity for artists and Open Studios participants as they seek to re-connect with audiences after such a challenging year.
“We hope that it will help welcome visitors from further afield, enabling them to plan a day out to visit the many studios, attractions and eateries that Somerset has to offer! It will also help further raise Somerset artists’ visibility alongside the Open Studios event as artists normally work in private or secluded spaces throughout the year.”
Top image: Julia Thompson sat at butchers block using hammer 300
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