Bluebell Gallery launched in memory of mum and midwife

Bluebell Art Gallery launch - Anne-Marie Stijelja, Ben Pearce and Steve Morgan.
Bluebell Art Gallery launch - Anne-Marie Stijelja, Ben Pearce and Steve Morgan.

The Bluebell Gallery has been officially opened at Bedford Hospital to offer a space for artists to exhibit.

The gallery space was opened by Ben Pearce, director of Paintings In Hospitals, an art engagement project set up in the 1950’s which helps patients, visitors and staff engage with art and artists to improve their health and wellbeing.

Anne-Marie Stijelja, Bedford based artist and curator of the gallery space, approached the hospital with the idea after the death of her mother Rita Abbate, who worked as a midwife at the hospital for many years. The space is dedicated to her memory and is next to the Swannery restaurant. The gallery features the work of artists and photographers which will change throughout the year.

Anne-Marie worked with Steve Morgan, director of support services at the hospital and The Bedford Hospitals Charity to open the gallery, with a percentage of proceeds of sales helping to fund additional art projects within the hospital.

She said: “I was inspired to set up the gallery after seeing artwork at Addenbrooke’s where my mother was a patient. The work was a pleasant distraction from her illness and helped elevate her spirits at a particularly difficult time.”

If you are interested in exhibiting artwork in Bluebell Gallery email amstijelja@btinternet.com