Bedfordshire artists unite to hold huge exhibition

Artists from across the county have united to stage what may be the biggest celebration of local art ever held in Bedfordshire.
Jennifer SteeleJennifer Steele
Jennifer Steele

Artists Network Bedfordshire is holding its first spring exhibition at Parkside Hall in Ampthill this weekend.

It features the diverse work of some 50 artists, including woodwork master Tom Frost from Houghton Regis, and Bedford artist Anne-Marie Stijelja – whose mosaics are made entirely out of stamps.

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Tom, who is one of the event’s organisers, said: “The idea came from a push to think a little bigger in our attempts to bring unique and interesting pieces of art to the people of Bedfordshire.

The work of Anne-Marie StijeljaThe work of Anne-Marie Stijelja
The work of Anne-Marie Stijelja

“Making art is a hard and sometimes lonely business, but selling it is much more effective when artists collaborate.”

Metal-work maestro Jim Francis from Willingtonwill also be showing at the exhibition.Francis is known for his metal statues (a metal hedgehog certainly made an impression on this reporter) and wall hangings.

Jennifer Steele, of Artists Network Bedfordshire, said: “It’s the largest group show ever organised by the ANB, with many artists in order to have as varied a show as possible. All the places in the exhibition have been taken, so we’re expecting an excellent show.”

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Tom added: “There will be several hundred pieces of art that are unique, individual and affordable, covering everything from pottery and furniture to paintings and sculpture.”

The spring exhibition runs at Parkside Hall, Ampthill, from 10am to 4pm on Saturday, May 23 and Sunday, May 24.

The event is free with refreshments provided. All art is for sale.