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1 October 2013

On The Road Day Two

For this outing of SAW Venues I headed to Taunton with the aim of heading westwards, homeward bound, the first port of call being Venue 33 - Five @107.

Artist and writer Jo Backhouse had allowed the use of her home for this exhibition which had received a coat of white paint in the downstairs interior especially. Jo was there to welcome visitors and I commented on how the open invitation to their private view, printed in the SAW brochure, was a brave move considering the personal location for the exhibition. Jo explained that this had not been the original intention but previous plans had fallen through so some aspects of their entry had been amended but not others! Despite this Jo said they were not over run with unruly house guests and the evening had gone remarkably well.

Whilst taking the image above I hadn't realised but Jo was reading the SAW blog, which I suppose is only fair as I was looking at her work too! You may read her writers blog here

 Jessica Palmer 
The exhibition also features work by John Crabb, Jessica Palmer, Lorna Siviter and Tom Lindsey and is now open every day from 11am until 4pm - do pop in if you pass their welcoming font door.

The next venue on my route was to be in Milverton but I spotted a yellow sign en route and called into Venue 32 - The Chapel. I must admit the artists here were struggling with the space, although a beautiful building the hanging system wasn't great, it was very dark and they openly admitted they needed more light. The exhibition included work by  Alexandra Lavizzari, Sue Gutteridge, Kate Elford and Beth Philpot.

 Beth Philpot

Potter Raamy Nadim, from Wellington, was also showcasing his colourful and functional stoneware, perfect for slow cooking stews this coming Autumn, I loved the choice of styles and glazes available.

Time to head on to Venue 29 which could catch you out when planning your day as it opens late at 1pm, although is open until 6pm. Now some venues feel just right when you walk in, they some up for me the essence of art week and this is one of them - a great mix of work from five different artists I could have quite happily moved in!

Featuring work by Sally Mears, Penny Price, Naoko Takata, Louise Waugh and Judy Willoughby you will be spoilt for choice if you are looking for work to adorn your home. They also have a delightful art garden where you may enjoy tea and cake.

Venue 27 in Crowcombe was next. Now I have a personal soft spot for Church House as it was where we held our wedding reception, so any excuse to visit is always a bonus. It's a great space in which to exhibit as the custodians of this village resource have invested in a professional hanging system and good lighting. Showcasing their work for this year's art week were Janet Lawrence, Helen Simpson, Myra Barratt and David Chadwick. Janet was busy in between visitors demonstrating the technique of watercolour painting, in contrast her atmospheric tree canvases were also on display.

My day then unfortunately had to be cut short as it was time to collect a small boy from school. I had planned to call into Venue 11 and then onto Porlock for Venue 22, which is rather out on a limb as it is the Venue furthest west on the SAW map. The weir is always an enigmatic place to visit especially when you can catch the waft of wood smoke on the air and hopefully you will have a longer day to explore.


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