Cheltenham Exhibition Photos
Here is a selection of photographs taken by Andy Lloyd at the Cheltenham Open Air Art Exhibition in 2004.
The Exhibition takes place in Imperial Gardens, a well-managed park area in the centre of Cheltenham that is at the forefront of the town's efforts to excel in such competitions as 'Britain In Bloom'. At the weekends during the summer Festival there is often live music next to the bar area.
When the weather is favourable, such events, combined with the attendant art exhibition, provide a wonderful opportunity for relaxation and entertainment at the Gardens.
The ongoing popularity of the Cheltenham Open Air Art Exhibition may be attributed to a number of factors. The original art on display is highly accessible to the general public, and the prices are very reasonable (even children seem to realise this: the small boy in the right-hand picture above exclaimed to his Mum "Look, Mummy, it's a bargain." !!). For the artists it also provides a good opportunity to gauge how the public react to their paintings when placed alongside the work of other artists.
Artists wishing to take part should be aware that the Exhibition requires considerable personal effort on the part of all contributors. Each exhibiting artist must place his/her paintings onto the wire meshing before 10am each day and must return every evening at 8.30pm to take them away. The paintings themselves must be hung in accordance with the rules of the exhibition, and must be presented in appropriate frames with borders. On top of that, the artists take it in turns to steward the exhibition, selling paintings, providing security and answering questions from the public.
The Exhibition is organised by a Committee of volunteers, who are generally artists themselves. To them falls the lion's share of the work; the paperwork and mailing, organisation of the screen allocations, organising the stewarding, arranging the scaffolding and liaising with the town council. The Exhibition is a collaborative venture that is run on a not-for-profit basis to benefit the people of Cheltenham and the county's art community alike.