Each May, our home town of Brighton is put into overdrive with the Brighton Festival, Brighton Fringe and the Artists Open Houses, running all month. Even though Brighton is already an incredibly creative city, you literally cannot move for pop up theatre, comedy, exciting new venues and wonderful performances. It is as exhausting as it is exciting. And as official reviewers this year for the excellent EggMag, we are enjoying it even more.
However, there is one element to May that is a real joy and we look forward to each year – the Artists Open Houses.
Springing up through the various art collectives that scatter the city, they are all brought together under the Open House banner for the month arranged neatly into trails in most of the major areas of Brighton.
Using the brilliantly produced (and free) Artists Open House brochure or mobile app, you can discover areas of Brighton which you perhaps had never visited – peeking into the homes of the artists themselves, purchasing a cup of tea and home made cake and having a chat with the people who actually created the art, design and craft.
And this is the real bonus to the Artists Open Houses. Not only do you find wonderful pieces which span the realms of fine art, illustration, photography, jewellery and design collected together beautifully, you will probably get the chance to chat to the maker themselves.
So much of the creative process is a personal thing – particularly with solo artists and designer/ makers so having the ability to talk through the reasoning to a piece, their inspiration or even whether they could do you the same item but perhaps in grey is priceless. In an age of the mass produced, the personality that is poured into art, design and craft is something that we have tended to lose – it is this great collective that allows us to reconnect.
It does feel as though these wonderful artists, designers and makers have been hidden away in their studios across Brighton, all working independently and the Open Houses is where we all get to discover them, so get out there.
Find a piece, talk to the maker and treasure it.
We will be posting some of our favourite makers here on the Ecospot, so keep your eyes peeled for a variety of both art, design and craft suitable for the eclectic interior.
see the Artists Open Houses website for details on all the locations across Brighton.