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Step into the vibrant world of Worthing Art, where creativity knows no bounds and every stroke tells a story. From traditional to contemporary, Worthing’s art scene captivates with its dynamic blend of coastal inspiration and urban influences. With a treasure trove of artistic expressions in galleries and streets, this town effortlessly captivates artists and enthusiasts alike. Whether you collect, create, or simply appreciate visual storytelling, Worthing art offers something extraordinary for everyone. Unravel the layers of creativity and passion that make this coastal town a haven for art aficionados.
Historical significance of art in Worthing
Worthing is a town with a rich and diverse history of art, dating back to the prehistoric times. Here are some of the highlights of Worthing’s artistic heritage:
- Worthing is home to four of Britain’s 14 confirmed Neolithic flint mines, which are among the oldest mines in Europe and the world. Flint from these mines was used to make tools and weapons, but also to create some of the earliest examples of representational art in Britain. For instance, four engravings of a bull and a deer have been found in a shaft of one of the Cissbury flint mines. These drawings may have had a symbolic or ritual significance for the ancient miners.
- Worthing Museum and Art Gallery is one of the largest and most important regional museums in the UK, with a collection of over 30,000 objects spanning archaeology, costume, textiles, fine art, decorative art, toys, local history and more. The museum was founded in 1908 by local philanthropist John Broadwater, who donated his collection of paintings, prints, coins and curiosities to the town. The museum has a reputation for its outstanding costume and textile collection, which includes garments from the 17th century to the present day, as well as accessories, jewellery, lace, embroidery and quilts. The museum also hosts temporary exhibitions and events throughout the year, covering various aspects of art and culture.
- Worthing has been a popular seaside resort since the 18th century, attracting many artists, writers and celebrities who were inspired by its scenery, climate and atmosphere. Some of the famous names associated with Worthing include Jane Austen, Oscar Wilde, Harold Pinter, Graham Greene, John Betjeman, Laurence Olivier and Elisabeth Frink.
Worthing has also been a centre for contemporary art, with several galleries, studios and public art projects. One of the most notable examples of public art in Worthing is the sculpture of a headless man and a headless woman by Elisabeth Frink, which stands outside Alexander Terrace at Liverpool Gardens. The sculpture, titled Desert Quartet, was commissioned in 1985 and represents the four elements of earth, air, fire and water. The sculpture caused some controversy when it was first unveiled, as some people found it disturbing or inappropriate for a shopping centre. However, it has since become a landmark and a symbol of Worthing’s artistic identity.
I hope this information helps you plan your visit to Worthing and discover more of the artistic heritage of the town. If you have any questions, please feel free to ask us.
Art galleries and museums in Worthing
There are several art galleries and museums in Worthing that you can visit to enjoy and learn more about the historical significance of Worthing art in the town. Here are some of the options:
- Worthing Museum and Art Gallery is one of the largest and most important regional museums in the UK, with a collection of over 30,000 objects spanning archaeology, costume, textiles, fine art, decorative art, toys, local history and more. The museum was founded in 1908 by local philanthropist John Broadwater, who donated his collection of paintings, prints, coins and curiosities to the town. The museum has a reputation for its outstanding costume and textile collection, which includes garments from the 17th century to the present day, as well as accessories, jewellery, lace, embroidery and quilts. The museum also hosts temporary exhibitions and events throughout the year, covering various aspects of art and culture. The museum is free to visit and open from Wednesday to Sunday.
- Connaught Cinema is part of Worthing Theatres and Museum, and is partnered with Picturehouse to bring Worthing the best in art-house, documentaries and foreign cinema alongside the best blockbusters and screenings of classic films from the archives. The cinema is one of the oldest in the UK, having first opened its doors in 1914. Although many original features are still in place, the cinema equipment is state of the art. The cinema also has a bar and a café where you can enjoy a drink and a snack before or after the film. The cinema is open every day and tickets can be booked online or at the box office.
- Montague Gallery: The gallery has two floors that can be hired for events and exhibitions. The gallery also hosts regular workshops for adults and children to learn various art forms, such as lino printing, pottery, needle felting, and watercolour painting. Montague gallery features the work of over 40 artists from Sussex, covering a wide range of genres and mediums, such as paintings, prints, photography, jewellery, ceramics, glass, textiles, and digital art. Some of the artists include Kim Adele Fuller, Michelle Dawson, Naomi Frances, Nick Orsborn, and Sarah Vosmer. The gallery also sells a selection of original cards designed by the artists, suitable for various occasions. The cards are affordable and unique, and reflect the style and personality of the artists.
- Colonnade House: Colonnade House is a creative hub in Worthing that provides studio and gallery space to local artists, makers, designers and innovators. It is one of the town’s most iconic architectural landmarks, dating back to the early 1800s. It hosts regular exhibitions, events and workshops for the public to enjoy and learn from the local creative sector. You can find more information about Colonnade House on their website or visit them at 47 Warwick Street, Worthing BN11 3DH.
- Room With A View: If you are looking for a unique and inspiring place to visit, you might want to check out the Room with a View Fine Art Gallery in Worthing. This gallery showcases the works of local and national artists, ranging from paintings and sculptures to ceramics and jewellery. You can admire the beauty and diversity of the art, as well as enjoy the stunning views of the seafront from the gallery windows. The gallery is open every day from 10 am to 5 pm, and admission is free.
- West End Gallery: West End Gallery is a “not for profit” gallery that provides spaces for local artists, crafters, and creators to display and sell their work. They are dedicated to supporting local talent and showcasing their unique creations. All the items in their gallery are only sold here, making them stand out from other galleries in Worthing. They believe in the power of art to bring communities together, inspire creativity, and promote cultural exchange.
Local artists and their contributions to the Worthing arts scene
Worthing is a town with a rich and diverse history of art, dating back to the prehistoric times. Many local artists have contributed to the Worthing arts scene, showcasing their work in various venues and events. Here are some examples of local artists and their contributions to the Worthing arts scene:
Horace is a street artist who creates murals around Worthing town centre, often featuring famous people or animals associated with the town. He is sometimes called “Worthing’s very own Banksy” because of his anonymity and style of art. He has collaborated with local businesses and organisations to create some of his artworks, such as the Time for Worthing campaign and the RSPCA charity shop. He also sells original pop art paintings and is available for commission. You can see some of his work on his Instagram account or visit some of the locations where his murals are displayed, such as The Whiskey Rooms bar, Yamu Yamu Japanese restaurant, Worthing Hospital, Portland Road, Selden Road and Montague Street.
West Sussex Art Society: This is a society that was founded in 1929 and has about 60 members, ranging from amateur to professional artists. The society meets on the second Saturday of every month at West Park School, for talks and practical art workshops. The society also holds exhibitions and competitions throughout the year. You can find out more about the society and how to join here.
Events and festivals showcasing Worthing’s artistic talent
Worthing Artists Open Houses is an annual event that showcases the work of local artists in various venues around Worthing. It is an opportunity to explore Worthing’s art community, discover new talent, and purchase original art. Some of the features of Worthing Artists Open Houses are:
- Three weekends of art: The event takes place over three consecutive weekends in June and July, from 11am to 5pm. You can visit over 50 houses, studios, galleries, and other venues that display and sell a range of art forms, such as paintings, prints, photography, ceramics, textiles, jewellery, and more.
- Free trail map: You can pick up a free trail map from the beginning of May at various locations around town, such as Colonnade House, Worthing Museum, and Worthing Library. The map shows the location and details of each venue, as well as the artists and their work. You can also download the map from the website.
- Diverse and inclusive art: The event celebrates the diversity and inclusivity of Worthing’s art scene, featuring artists of different backgrounds, styles, and mediums. You can find traditional and contemporary art, as well as experimental and innovative art. You can also see the work of homeless and local artists at St Clare’s Community Hub.
- Interactive and educational activities: The event also offers interactive and educational activities for visitors, such as workshops, demonstrations, talks, and film screenings. You can learn new skills, meet the artists, and get involved in the creative process. Some of the activities include a photographic exhibition by Alan Humphries at Montague Gallery, a film and interactive exhibition by Worthing Film Club at Colonnade House, and a display of paintings, sculpture, ceramics, and drawings by West Sussex Arts Society at St Mary the Blessed Virgin Church.
Art workshops and classes for aspiring artists
If you are looking for art workshops and classes for aspiring artists in Worthing, you might be interested in the following options:
- Skyblue Art Classes: This is a friendly and informal art class that runs every week at Heene Community Centre in Worthing. The class is taught by Jane Denman, a BA Fine Art and Certified PGCE Art Tutor for adults. You can learn how to draw and paint with different media, such as watercolour, acrylic, and pencil. The class also organises events and exhibitions for its students. You can find out more about the class here.
- Montague Gallery: This is a website that provides art workshops in Worthing. Held above their wonderful new gallery space, The Montague Gallery studios are light and airy with room for up to 12 people to learn comfortably and safely. View their forthcoming workshops here.
Artistic initiatives and community projects in Worthing
Worthing is a town that values art and culture, and supports various initiatives and projects that promote artistic expression and community engagement. Some examples of these are:
- Worthing Theatres and Museum (WTM): This is a cultural hub that offers a diverse range of theatre, cinema, museum, and art gallery experiences. WTM aims to inspire, educate, and entertain audiences of all ages and backgrounds. WTM also hosts festivals, workshops, and outreach programs that celebrate Worthing’s rich heritage and creative potential.
- Creative Waves Community Arts: This is a non-profit organisation that delivers art projects and events that involve local schools, artists, and communities. Creative Waves aims to enhance the public realm and foster social cohesion through art. Some of their projects include the Worthing Art Trail, the Beach Hut Advent Calendar, and the Worthing Light Festival.
- Colonnade House: This is a creative hub that provides affordable studio and exhibition space for local artists and creative businesses. Colonnade House also runs events, workshops, and networking opportunities that support the development and growth of the creative sector in Worthing. Colonnade House is part of the Creative Enterprise Zone initiative, which aims to make Worthing a leading destination for the creative industries.
- Worthing Community Chest: This is a charity that provides small grants to local groups and organisations that benefit the Worthing community. Worthing Community Chest supports projects that cover a wide range of themes, including art, culture, sport, health, and education. Some of the art-related projects that have received funding from Worthing Community Chest include the Worthing Portrait Artist of the Year, the Worthing WOW Festival, and the Worthing Street Dance Challenge.
Support for the arts in Worthing – grants and funding opportunities
If you are looking for support for the arts in Worthing, you might be interested in the following information:
- Grants and funding sources: There are various grants and funding sources that are available for arts and culture projects in Worthing, such as the Adur Community Grants, the Worthing Community Chest, the Arts Council National Lottery Project Grants, and the Clore Duffield Foundation. These funding sources have different eligibility criteria, application deadlines, and grant amounts, so you need to check the details carefully before applying. You can find more information and application forms for these and other funding opportunities on the websies.
Conclusion – Worthing’s thriving arts scene and its impact on the community
Worthing is a culturally rich town with a vibrant arts scene. Local artists open their homes and studios to the public, showcasing their work and offering craft activities. The town also has galleries, venues, and events like Colonnade House, Splash Point, and Worthing Artists Open Houses festival. The arts scene positively impacts the community, promoting social cohesion, economic growth, and personal well-being. Worthing is a place that values and supports art and culture, allowing individuals to explore and express their creativity.