An explosion of elderly talent

Artist Sue Driver who started the Wilstead and Wixams Art Club
Artist Sue Driver who started the Wilstead and Wixams Art Club

Who’d have believed that a genteel art club, started in February for Wilstead and Wixams senior citizens, would turn out to be such a sensational success?

Founder Sue Driver - a mere stripling of just 58 – is still reeling from the fabulous response to the club’s first exhibition last month.

She said: “The place was awash with strong colour, great designs and loads of imagination.

“There’s life in the older community yet – their verve, inspiration and remarkable talent have to be seen to be believed.”

Sue has another reason for being wowed by the get-up-and-go of her elderly artists.

They’ve been looking after her since she broke her ankle six weeks before the show opened.

She explained: “When people in their 70s end up doing meals-on-wheels and running errands for people in their 50s, that says a lot about the community.

“They all rallied to my aid to make sure the exhibition went ahead – they may all be retired but their energy and enthusiasm are a real inspiration.”

Sue – a talented professional who specialises in people and animal portraits – believes that many of the group are from that older generation who suppressed their artistic abilities to raise families and pay mortgages.

But now they’re releasing their inner Tracey Emins and Damien Hirsts in an explosion of colour and composition.

Sue said: “Many of them don’t have the confidence they should have but their work shows outstanding skill and ability. Clubs like this are essential for physical and mental welfare, particularly among the elderly who can so easily become isolated.”

The Wilstead and Wixams Art Club meets at Wilstead Village Hall from 2pm to 4pm every Monday afternoon and has a monthly workshop on a Saturday.

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