Tag Archives: sculpture

Over 24,000 visit Beacon Hill Sculpture Trail

Over the last few months, parts of the Beacon Hill Country Park have been filled with ‘tree-people’ and various other pieces of sculpture. The ‘Up To The Beacon Sculpture Trail’, created by ArtSpace Loughborough, and a successor to the award-winning ‘Into The Outwoods Sculpture Trail’ that has run in recent years, featured 34 sculptural installations, a ‘geo-timeline’, and over 80 ‘tree-people’. Sadly, the trail has now come to an end, but Nita Rao, who was lead artist for the project, was happy to see so many members of the public walking around the 2.2 km route at the Beacon Hill Country Park, and to read comments about nice days out on the project’s social media channels. “It has been great to talk to people around the trail and during workshops, with visitors finding the work thought provoking as well as enjoyable”.  

The sculpture trail’s Facebook page is full of people tagging their friends and family members, and leaving comments about their experience of the trail. The reception has been really positive, Nita says. One facebook user commented: “We went last week and had a super time. The little [tree] people were great fun to find.” 

Recurring themes of the sculpture trail included the climate crisis and the importance of biodiversity, addressed by numerous pieces of sculpture produced by various artists. Nita’s Don’t look up, an ostrich and ostrich chick, was one example. The adult Ostrich had its head buried in the sand, unwilling to look to the future, while the chick looked up in hope. Fans of the sculpture trail were tasked with suggesting names for the Ostrich chick – Nita chose Hope to reflect the need to boldly face the future and not bury our heads in the sand in light of the climate and ecological crises we face.  

Other works highlighted the importance of biodiversity. Lisa Denham made a beautiful set of small ceramic birds, and, as well as the ostrichs there were albatross, dragonflies, ants, polar bears, bees, snails and slugs, a fox, an adder, a hedgehog, a bird of prey and two shoals of fish – Nita Rao’s Our gift to nature, willow fish filled with plastic from the river Soar, and Shoal by Sarah Green, hanging fish made from wire and cloth. 

Nita Rao’s Polar Bears, symbolically filled with white plastic and perched on small platforms to represent shrinking ice sheets, also provide a warning for the ecological crisis.  

The trail was nestled in the Upper Beacon at the Beacon Hill Country Park, near some of the oldest rock formations in England. The trail also celebrated these rocks, and the Charnwood Forest’s (encompassing the Beacon) attempts to gain UNESCO World Geopark status for the area, as a historically significant area based on its unique geological heritage including the discovery of the ‘Charnia’ fossil there in 1958, one of the oldest pieces of evidence of complex life. 

This was represented by Nita Rao’s willow Charnia, as well as a ‘geotimeline’, A brief timeline for life on earth, produced by Tony Thory (with illustrations from Ingrid Klein-Daniels and Erica Middleton) which described the evolution of life on earth. It highlighted past mass extinctions, the coming and going of the dinosaurs and the emergence of humans, from 560million years ago to the present. The 17 markers around the 2.2 kilometre trail were placed in proportion with the time passed between events. In this vein, each metre walked represented 255,000 years of time, the emergence of homo sapiens appearing only 1.1m from the end of the trail!  

There was also a ‘fascinating fossil day’ on 20 august, featuring workshops where visitors could create small willow ‘Charnia’, paperclay ammonites and fossil fern prints. The day also featured guided walks around the Beacon rocks with Charnwood Forest Geopark geologist Dr Jack Matthews.  

Out of the 34 amazing installations on the trail, some were created in school outreach workshops locally. The Amazing Ants made by Nita Rao and Lisa Denham, using recycled materials, were made with pupils from Cobden Primary, Limehurst and Outwoods Edge Primary. The six giant Dragonflies were made from steel and willow by Nita Rao in workshops at the Rectory Wildlife Garden and Maplewell Hall School. The Wings installation was a collaboration between Lisa Denham and Glebe House Workskills clients.  

The trail was generously supported by grants from Leicestershire County Council, Charnwood Forest Geopark, Intelligent Energy, Leicestershire and Rutland Community Foundation, Charnwood Arts, Shire Community Grants, the Heritage Fund, Charnwood Borough Council and The National Forest. 

Loughborough ArtSpace, the trail organisers, are pleased to have been able to brighten peoples’ days and help get them out and active in the inspirational Beacon Hill Country Park area. They hope to stage another new trail in summer 2024 or 2025. 

Up to the Beacon Sculpture Trail 2023  – Free and open to all. 10nd June – 17th Sept 2023.  

Up to the beacon sculpture Trail Workshops

Free Workshops at the Sculpture Trail

‘Ways with Words’ – Saturday 24 June from 2.00pm to 4.00pm, ArtSpace member and award-winning writer Mary Byrne will be hosting a creative writing workshop. Suitable for all levels, 13-years plus, booking for this is essential. To book your place please email tony.thory@ntlworld.com.

Drop-in willow weaving workshop – Saturday 22 July
10am – 4pm. Learn to make your own random weave willow sphere with Nita Rao. No need to book, just turn up and get creative!


There will also be a ‘Fascinating Fossil Day’ sometime in August, including free willow workshops and talks by The National Forest Company Geoheritage Officer Dr Jack Matthews. Watch this space for dates and details.

How to find us :

sculpture trail moves to Beacon country park

The renowned ArtSpace sculpture trail will return to Charnwood this June, moving from its previous home of the Outwoods, to Beacon country park. 

‘Up to the Beacon Sculpture trail’, formerly ‘Into the Outwoods Sculpture Trail’, organised by Artspace Loughborough, will open on June 10 and stay in place until September 17. 

The trail, which was run in 2019 and 2022, won Leicestershire Tourism’s ‘Best Free Event of the Year’ award last year. 

This years trail will see a new generation of tree people.

Tony Thory, trail organiser, said: “This summer will see the hugely successful, award-winning woodland sculpture trail reinvented and rising to new heights as it will be staged at The Beacon Country Park for the first time.” 

The Project is being generously supported by Leicestershire County Council’s Shire Grants, The Intelligent Energy Charitable Trust, Leicestershire and Rutland Community Foundation, Charnwood Arts, The Charnwood Forest Landscape Partnership Scheme, Charnwood Borough Council and Leicestershire County Council’s Parks Department 

Nita Rao, lead artist for the project, said: “We expect there to be over 25 works making up the trail, which will be based on the theme ‘Harmony and Healing for Planet and People’. 

Lisa Denham’s ceramics will feature again this year.

“Much of the sculpture will directly reference issues of climate change, sustainability and ecology. Through these trail works, and the outreach workshop programme at local schools, we aim to raise awareness of the climate emergency and encourage people to think about our place in the natural world. 

“The sculpture trail will encourage people from different backgrounds to come together, be in nature, engage in the creative arts, and learn new skills participating in workshops. These are all well proven ways to improve and develop community as well as supporting improved mental health and emotional well-being.” 

Nita Rao making a giant willow figure.

So come up to the beacon this summer and discover fascinating fossils, amazing ants, a new generation of ‘tree people’ and much more. It is free and open to all, dawn to dusk, at The Beacon Country Park near Loughborough (standard parking charges do apply).  

Up to the Beacon Sculpture Trail 2023 

Free and open to all. 10nd June – 17th Sept 2023.  

Opening times: Dawn to dusk, 7 days a week. Upper Beacon Country Park. 

Outwoods Sculpture Trail sees more than 20,000 visitors !

We have estimated that visitor numbers were well in excess of 20,000 for the 8 weeks that the trail was open. Over 60 visitors took part in willow dragon fly workshops during the jubillee celebration holiday, marking the opening of the trail, and approximately 40 visitors took part in a creative drop-in workshop making flags and messages of hope for the ‘message in a bottle’ installation. Another 42 visitors took part in our ‘find the tree people’ guided walk.

Walk the trail here in photographs and see some of the many visitor comments we have recieved ……

“Wonderful, such fun and very important messages too. Kids love it, especially spotting the Tree People!” – visitor comment.

Jubilee holiday willow dragonfly workshops
Jubilee holiday willow dragonfly workshops
Jubilee holiday willow dragonfly workshops
Jubilee holiday willow dragonfly workshops
Jubilee holiday willow dragonfly workshops
Flag making workshop.


“The horse is stupendous and quite beautiful! It also reminds me of the Narnia creation story illustration, where all the animals grow out of the earth. Its symbolic.”
– visitor comment.

Flag of hope.
Trail start.
Keeper of the Woods – Nita Rao.
Keeper of the Woods – Nita Rao.
70 ‘tree people’ line the route …

“Wonderful to experience sculpture in such a beautiful setting. Inspiring and thought provoking and my two year old grandchild loved looking for the tiny people” – visitor comment.

70 ‘tree people’ line the route …
Spirit of the Woods – Nita Rao.
Spirit of the Woods – Nita Rao.

“What a fabulous opportunity to see these pieces placed in natural woodland. Very inspirational” – visitor comment.

Long tailed tits – Lisa Denham.
Long tailed tits – Lisa Denham.
Long tailed tits – Lisa Denham.
Long tailed tits – Lisa Denham.

“This was wonderful. Attempted on Sunday but far too busy. Had the woods to myself Monday evening. Gorgeous thanks” – visitor comment.

Magpies – Lisa Denham.
Magpies – Lisa Denham.

“We thoroughly enjoyed the sculpture trail and highly recommended friends and family to visit. We thought it was absolutely amazing!! Well done to everyone involved!!” – visitor comment.

Tree creeper – Lisa Denham.
Tree creeper – Lisa Denham.
Taking Root – Nita Rao.
Taking Root – Nita Rao.
Taking Root – Nita Rao.

“Wonderful seeing a very familiar site a fresh. Great for dealing with anxiety. Loved the variety and sensitivity to natural surroundings” – visitor comment.

For the Love of Trees – Pam Everard.
For the Love of Trees – Pam Everard.
For the Love of Trees – Pam Everard.
Creative writing workshop led by Mary Byrne.

“I have visited twice. What a wonderful idea, a walk through a gorgeous wood, filled with sculptures that told a message.The sculptors had done a fabulous job and loved the wood lice with smiley faces! All sorts of facts and messages on the trail pamphlet,well done everyone involved. ” – visitor comment.

70 ‘tree people’ line the route …
Guided ‘tree people’ walk revealing locations of all 70.
70 ‘tree people’ line the route …
70 ‘tree people’ line the route …

“Would be great if the trail can last the whole of the summer holidays” – visitor comment.

Guardian Angel – Nita Rao.

This is worth a visit. We took our pre- teen grandchildren and they had a great time spotting the sculptures especially the small ceramic people perched on branches!

‘Older than Dinosaurs’ – Nita Rao.
‘Older than Dinosaurs’ – Nita Rao.
‘Older than Dinosaurs’ – Nita Rao.
‘Older than Dinosaurs’ – Nita Rao.

“Amazing trail, look above eye level, not to miss small peaple !” – visitor comment.

Replenish – Erica Middleton.
Replenish – Erica Middleton.
Replenish – Erica Middleton.
Replenish – Erica Middleton.

“That’s wonderful been round once but would like to go around again. We can now the time as been extended shame it’s not until August.” – visitor comment

Ebb and Flow – Alison Folland.
Ebb and Flow – Alison Folland.
Ebb and Flow – Alison Folland.

Had a lovely visit today – wonderful sculptures.” – visitor comment.

70 ‘tree people’ line the route …
Intrusion – Nita Rao.
Intrusion – Nita Rao.
Intrusion – Nita Rao.
Intrusion – Nita Rao.

“Well done to all for all the amazing work ” – visitor comment.👏

“It’s brilliant we have been twice and will probably go again😃 thank you.x” – visitor comment.

Wonderful Woodlice! – co-created by Nita Rao and Lisa Denham, and students from Outwoods Edge and Cobden Primary Schools.
Wonderful Woodlice! – co-created by Nita Rao and Lisa Denham, and students from Outwoods Edge and Cobden Primary Schools.
Wonderful Woodlice! – co-created by Nita Rao and Lisa Denham, and students from Outwoods Edge and Cobden Primary Schools.
Wonderful Woodlice! – co-created by Nita Rao and Lisa Denham, and students from Outwoods Edge and Cobden Primary Schools.

“Well done! My first visit was on Monday but I failed to spot many tree people! Tony must hidden them well! We didn’t find Holly either even though I was sure the dog would spot her! He was totally taken in by the swans and gave them a look as if he expected them to hiss at any moment.” – visitor comment.

Bird of Prey – Lisa Denham.
Bird of Prey – Lisa Denham.

“We have been 3 times now it’s lovely the grandchildren only found 51 tree people but I do think that was good for a 4 & 7 year old.👍👏👏👏When will we be able to purchase one please or 2 !!😃😘” – visitor comment.

Woodland Web – Judith Eason.
Woodland Web – Judith Eason.
Woodland Web – Judith Eason.
Woodland Web – Judith Eason.

“I loved all of it. Couldn’t wait till July, needed to see it as soon as possible. Hope you get chance to have it for 2023. Told my friends all about it ❤️❤️❤️” – visitor comment.

One’s Favourite – Jo Sheppard.
One’s Favourite – Jo Sheppard.
One’s Favourite – Jo Sheppard.
One’s Favourite – Jo Sheppard.

“Can I just say thank you very much to you and your team for organising it. It’s such a lovely thing & myself & my family have loved seeing all the sculptures back in the woods again. Well done!” – visitor comment.

Owl – Lisa Denham.

“Fabulous day out – the grandchildren had such fun looking for the little men – took us about 2.5hrs to get round- very educational as well – we allLoved it.” – visitor comment.

Think – Sally Reayer.
Think – Sally Reayer.
Think – Sally Reayer.
Think – Sally Reayer.
Think – Sally Reayer.
Think – Sally Reayer.
‘Holly’ – Lisa Denham.
Polar Bears – Nita Rao.
Polar Bears – Nita Rao.
Polar Bears – Nita Rao.
Polar Bears – Nita Rao.
Polar Bears – Nita Rao.

“Loved this ❤️ fantastic and thank you to all involved 👏👏” – visitor comment.

Aspire – Nita Rao.
Aspire – Nita Rao.
Aspire – Nita Rao.

“It does look amazing !!! xx” – visitor comments.

The Queen’s Swans – Lisa Denham.
The Queen’s Swans – Lisa Denham.
The Queen’s Swans – Lisa Denham.
The Queen’s Swans – Lisa Denham.

“Can it not stay until winter, many people still want to see it.” – visitor comment.

Tides of Change – Nita Rao.
Tides of Change – Nita Rao.
Tides of Change – Nita Rao.

“I visited with a friend today, and what a great time we had. The free entry makes it accesible for all, adults, children and dogs can enjoy the trail. It gives out good messages to all ages,or just makes for a pleasant walk under the gorgeous trees. I would love to have the opportunity to buy a little man or a long tailed tit, it would be a chance to put a little money back into the pot. Thank you for a lovely day .” – visitor comment.

Message in a Bottle – Nita Rao.
Message in a Bottle – Nita Rao.
Message in a Bottle – Nita Rao.
Message in a Bottle – Nita Rao.
Message in a Bottle – Nita Rao.

“Took our two granddaughters lots of fun looking for the clay men in the trees & the sculpturesWell worth a visit.” – visitor comment.

Open Cycle – Nita Rao.
Open Cycle – Nita Rao.

“We went today, well done 👏it was amazing!” – visitor comment.

70 Flags for 70 Years – Susheel Rao.
70 Flags for 70 Years – Susheel Rao.
70 Flags for 70 Years – Susheel Rao.
70 Flags for 70 Years – Susheel Rao.
70 Flags for 70 Years – Susheel Rao.
Shoal – Sarah Green.
Shoal – Sarah Green.
Shoal – Sarah Green.
Shoal – Sarah Green.

“It’s brilliant really hope you do more things like this 😀” – visitor comment.

Queen bee and her workers – Nita Rao, Alison Folland and Maplewell Hall School pupils.
Queen bee and her workers – Nita Rao, Alison Folland and Maplewell Hall School pupils.
Queen bee and her workers – Nita Rao, Alison Folland and Maplewell Hall School pupils.
Queen bee and her workers – Nita Rao, Alison Folland and Maplewell Hall School pupils.
Queen bee and her workers – Nita Rao, Alison Folland and Maplewell Hall School pupils.
Queen bee and her workers – Nita Rao, Alison Folland and Maplewell Hall School pupils.

“We loved it, thank you” – visitor comment.

INTO THE OUTWOODS SCULPTURE TRAIL 2022

JUNE 2ND – JULY 24TH 2022

ArtSpace invite you to come down to the Outwoods between 2nd june and 24th July to discover the 70 tree people lining the 1¼ mile woodland trail, encounter willow bees and dragonflies, the Queen’s horse, ceramic birds and giant woodlice … and much more. The trail will celebrate biodiversity and explore concerns about habitat loss and the climate emergency. We are also celebrating the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee and the 70 years of the Queens guardianship of the people and lands of the UK as part of our project theme ‘Harmony and Healing for Planet and People’ .

The trail is open to all, dawn to dusk, and entry is free.

Free Workshops

‘Trailing Words’: a creative writing workshop – Saturday 25th June 2 – 4 pm. Be inspired by the art on the trail! Creative writing workshop with artist and prize-winning author, Mary Byrne. Suitable for all levels 13 yrs plus. You will need to bring paper or notebook, pen and something to lean on.e.g. a clipboard, and a folding chair will be very useful. Booking essential, see below.

Make Flags of Hope : 11 am -4 pm Sunday 26th June : make textile flags and messages to add to the ‘message in a bottle’ sculpture by Nita Rao in the heart of the woodland trail. Drop-in workshop – no need to book – just turn up and get creative!

To book your place please email me at tony.thory@ntlworld.com or call/text 07786 857530. Let us know how many adults and children you want to book in and for which sessions. Thank you.

Very sorry but all Dragonfly workshops are now fully booked !

Come along and make your own willow dragonfly at these free workshops in the crook barn next to the main Outwoods car park 2pm-4pm on the afternoons of the 2nd, 3rd, 4th and 5th of June. All materials provided. Suitable for all levels. Booking essential.

People of the Trees – Nita Rao

The Outwoods Sculpture Trail goes Platinum!

The Into the Outwoods Sculpture Trail 2022 will open on 2nd June to mark the Platinum Jubilee and help celebrate 70 years of the Queen’s guardianship of the people and lands of the UK.

So ArtSpace invite you to come down to the Outwoods between 2nd june and 24th July to discover the 70 tree people lining the 11⁄4 mile woodland trail, encounter willow bees and dragonflies, the Queen’s horse, ceramic birds and giant woodlice … and much more. The trail will celebrate biodiversity and explore concerns about habitat loss and the climate emergency.

Success with Platinum Jubilee funding from the ‘Let’s Create’ Arts Council scheme means a more substantial trail with more artwork and free willow workshops on the afternoons of the 2nd, 3rd, 4th and 5th of June, to coincide with other jubilee celebrations. So come along and make your own willow dragonfly at these free workshops (booking via the ArtSpace website essential).

Installation work has begun !

The National Forest have also stepped up to help make this happen by awarding an ‘Arts Grant’ to fund some of the artist’s commissions. They are also funding a public workshop in the woods, free to participants, making ‘flags of hope’ to add to the ‘message in a bottle’ sculpture. This will be a drop-in workshop, so just turn up and get creative. Dates will be posted on the ArtSpace website.

In addition, the public have generously contributed to a ‘just giving’ page to fund more Sculpture commissions. This means the trail will have more than 25 works and co-created sculpture.

Shire Grants and the National forest award funding !

We are very pleased to announce that ArtSpace have been successful with funding bids to Leicestershire County Council’s Shire Grants and The National Forest’s Arts Grants for the 2022 Outwoods Sculture Trail.

Into The Outwoods Sculpture Trail 2022 is based on the theme ‘Harmony and Healing for Planet and People’. Much of the sculpture will directly reference issues of climate change, sustainability and ecology. Through these trail works, and the outreach workshop programme, we aim to raise awareness of the climate emergency and encourage people to think about our place in the natural world.

Felting workshop at the 2019 trail.

The Shire Grant funding will enable us to work with local schools and vulnerable groups to co-create work for the woodland trail. Mapelwell Hall School, Cobden School, Glebe House, the Wellbeing Café, and Albert Street Artists are all taking part. We aim to provide a vehicle for creative practice to help improve mental health and well being for the participants.

Funding from The National Forest Arts Grants will enable us to commission inspiring work for the trail, work with an additional school and run drop-in workshops for the public. 

Clay workshop at the 2019 trail.

The sculpture trail will encourage people from different backgrounds to come together, be and walk in nature, engage in the creative arts and learn new skills participating in workshops. These are all well proven ways to improve and develop relationships between participants as well as supporting improved mental health and emotional well-being.

We want to encourage people to visit the natural woodland environment and create a meaningful experience for them there so that they look on the woodland as a sanctuary in difficult times, enhancing a sense of place and where, through art, we can all make connections with our social and environmental context, with other people and with the natural world.

Willow workshop at the 2019 trail.
Willow workshop at the 2019 trail.

Into The Outwoods 2022 Sculpture Trail will be open from June 2nd to July 24th. It is free and open to all, dawn to dusk, at The Outwoods near Loughborough.

Crowdfunder Launched for Outwoods Sculpture trail

To donate follow this link…

DONATE

ArtSpace have spent many hours developing plans and submitting funding applications to Arts Council England and Charnwood Borough Council for an Outwoods Sculpture Trail in 2022. Unfortunately we have not been successful with these core funding applications. We have, however, secured a Leicestershire County Council ‘Shire Grant’ of £5000 to run a series of creative workshops with  Mapelwell Hall School, Glebe House and Cobden Primary School to co-create three or four woodland installations for the trail. 

We are now launching a ‘justgiving’ crowdfunding page in the hope of raising some funds to offer modest commissions to a number of local artists to produce and install work for the trail and create a more substantial experience for the people of Charnwood and Leicestershire.

Open Cycle – Nita Rao

The proposed theme, ‘Harmony and Healing for Planet and People’, aims to promote personal and community well-being and increase awareness of environmental sustainability and draw links between the two.  

Please help us make these plans become a reality . Any donation, however small, will be very helpful and appreciated. All funds raised will be used to build a bigger and better Outwoods trail. 

To donate follow this link…

DONATE

Blue – a new ArtSpace Exhibition

This exhibition is now closed. Please watch our archive virtual tour video.

Originally on-line 31 May to 3 November 2021.

ArtSpace present ‘Blue’, an interactive on-line exhibition. Members offer individual interpretations of the theme. The exhibits range from paintings and mixed media to photography, collage and prints.
Much of the work is for sale.
Enquiries are welcomed via individual artist’s emails, if given, or via the group email contact@artspace-lboro.co.uk.

If only I could …

Virtual tour.

Originaly on-line On-line 25th February to 24th May.

ArtSpace present their third interactive on-line exhibition. Members offer individual interpretations of the theme. The exhibits range from paintings and mixed media to photography, collage, video and prints. Please note the two videos in the exhibition are shown at the end of the video.

Much of the work is for sale. Prices and actual sizes are given in the catalogue or via the info tab for any specific artwork
Please note all work is shown at 2 x actual size in this virtual gallery.

Enquiries are welcomed via individual artist’s emails, if given, via the group email
contact@artspace-lboro.co.uk
or via our website
www.artspace-lboro.co.uk.

Layered Meanings

This interactive online exhibition has now closed.

Please watch our virtual tour archive video below.

An interactive online exhibition by members of ArtSpace.

Online December 1st – February 18th.

The theme “Layered Meanings” has been interpreted in various interesting and thought provoking ways by the 17 artists taking part.  Some have chosen to look at the theme in terms of layering of the painted surface, others have used words and phrases as a starting point to develop different interpretations through visual form.  Painting the changing view from windows and using a historical figure re-imagined as a present day eco-warrior are other themes explored by individuals; another has used imagery from childhood. Some have used the natural world as their visual stimulus for developing imagery based on the earth and nature. The exhibits range from paintings and mixed media to photography, collage, 3D work and prints. There are also ideas and creative responses based on the recent lockdown situation to express thoughts and feelings about the world at large; the pandemic and how it affects us all. 

in the dark – our first interactive on line exhibition

Sorry this interactive exhibition has now closed. Please watch our virtual tour video archive.

ArtSpace Loughborough launch “In the Dark”, our first interactive online exhibition. It will be on-line from 21st September until 21st November.  

The exhibition “In the Dark”, was set up and did actually open at Deda (Derby Dance Centre) in Derby UK back in March but unfortunately, as with many other exhibitions and events which rely on public support, Deda and the exhibition had to, with regret, close its doors. Rather than have the work unseen, it was decided to explore the magic of modern technology and investigate the possibilities of an interactive online exhibition. 

This is a new and exciting departure for ArtSpace Loughborough. One that will hopefully encourage and allow a great many more visitors, not just from the local area but worldwide to see the work that this group of local, professional artists is producing. 

ArtSpace Loughborough are a long-established group of mainly graduate artists living in the Charnwood area who are continuing to work in many different styles and a wide range of media from traditional painting and sculpture to land art, textile fine art and ceramics. Their work is contemporary, sometimes challenging and thought-provoking but always interesting and varied. 

 The theme of “In the Dark” was a title agreed upon some time before the threat of Covid19 was apparent and before it disrupted the lives of everyone in the world. It seems ironic that most of us were actually “In the Dark” as to the effect that this time of lockdown would have on all of our lives. 

The work covers many areas. Aspects of psychological feelings of being in the dark about situations, the darkness of night and how it affects the landscape and townscape, dancers performing on darkened and artificially lit stages, the darkness at the bottom of a river bed. The range of work is diverse and individual and there should be something for everyone’s taste or imagination to dwell on. 

In The Dark @ Déda

Déda Dance & Performance Centre, Derby


13th March – 9th May 2020 

ArtSpace  has opened an exhibition titled ‘In the Dark’ at Déda, Derby’s Dance & Performance Centre. 

The show was scheduled to run from 13th March to 9thMay. However, with the current Covid19 emergency Deda is now closed to the public and the future is uncertain.

In addition to this page you can view some of the work on our exhibition page here.

Beryl Miles

Twenty-two members of the group produced a variety of work in different media on the theme. Some are dramatic night scenes and others show more nuanced relationships between light and dark. A number of artists have interpreted the title in a psychological way: being ‘in the dark’ implies lack of knowledge or even secrets.

Erica Middleton

Nature features in much of the art. Erica Middleton has small nocturnes depicting the same river scene on successive clear winter nights. Sally Reayer also uses river imagery, this time the play of light on a river bed. Beryl Miles has an atmospheric painting, verging on abstraction, showing moonlight on the sea, and another of street light on snow. Jemma Rix’s cyanotype prints were inspired by memories of walking through shady woodland with sunlight forcing its way through the canopy. Jonathan Palmer’s photographic prints hint at the past in present nature. Anna Michalska’s abstract work is inspired by the shapes and colours of nature. 

Sally Reayer
Beryl Miles
Jonathan Palmer

There are art works which explore states of being. Pam Everard’s ‘Dreamtime’ depicts the period between dusk and dawn, including dreaming. Judith Eason’s paintings are evocations from periods of significant transition in her life. 

Pam Everard

A number of the artists play with stories and ambiguity. The women in Kate Hooper’s mixed media monoprints are deliberately enigmatic and dreamlike. There seem to be secrets between the people in Mary Byrne’s film noir-inspired narratives. Alison Folland’s pieces, using materials as diverse as maps and music scores, tell stories with layers of different memories and thoughts. Mary Austin references Dylan Thomas’s ‘Under Milk Wood’ in her oil painting ‘Captain Cat Dreams’. 

Kate Hooper
Ingrid Kleins-Daniels

As befits the venue, Ingrid Kleins-Daniels and Jacqueline Palmer are influenced by dance. Ingrid tries to capture the semi-abstract shapes and fleeting impressions of dancers’ movements onstage. Jacqueline sees dance as a link between body and spirit. 

Tony Thory’s composite photograph ‘Eclipse’ references society’s lack of vision as the world plunges into a new period of mass extinction.

Tony Thory

‘In the Dark’Déda Dance & Performance Centre, 19 Chapel St, Derby DE1 3GU. 

Tel: 01332 370911. 

Into The Outwoods Sculpture Trail

Next free drop-in Workshops 27th May – Get creative this Spring at the Into The Outwoods Sculpture Trail !

Quick Visitor Survey

If you have visited the Sculpture Trail and/or taken part in our drop-in workshops please complete this quick survey for us. It will help us feedback to our sponsors, help with funding for future projects and help us provide better projects. Thank you very much! 

How to find us ….

ArtSpace are inviting the public to come along to the Loughborough Outwoods on 27th May for our ‘Sculpture in the Woods Day’. Get creative in a series of free sculpture drop-in workshops spread along the Sculpture Trail. Eight drop-in trail-based workshops will run between 10.30am and 4.30pm allowing visitors to both make work to take home as well as work on a larger collaborative piece to remain on the trail.

Workshops will aim to inspire, engage and challenge adults, young people and children, enhancing their opportunity to experience and be inspired by the sculpture trail and reconnect with this ancient woodland. Try felting a pebble or contribute to making a fantasy woodland landscape using clay and natural woodland materials. You will also be able to make your own fish from willow withies and much more. The full program for the ‘Sculpture in the Woods Day’ is posted below.

Back to Nature, Sue Barry and Susan West

The workshops are all part of the Into The Outwoods Sculpture Trail, an ArtSpace initiative which will see a 1 1/4 mile sculpture trail weave its way through the Outwoods for 6 weeks, from 27th April to 9th June. Find the ‘Keeper of the Woods’, giant felted bluebells, willow tree spheres, an owl, jumping willow horse and much more! 

Jack Russel, Lisa Denham

Twelve commissioned artists created and installed their work in the woods over the Easter holiday period, 15-26th April, allowing visitors to observe the process and talk with the artists. Work is figurative as well as abstract, using natural materials, felt, willow, ceramic and metal.

Peacock, Lisa Denham

The opening event for the sculpture trail on the 27th and 28th April was a great success despite the howling gale at the start. It included two days of free public drop-in workshops.

Aspire-Rooted in the Earth, Reaching for the Stars, Nita Rao
… Like a Fish Needs a Bicycle, Susan West

ArtSpace are a Charnwood based group of professional and semi-professional artists that formed in 1997. The Project has been generously supported by Arts Council England, The National Forest and Charnwood Borough Council. 

May 27th Workshop Programme

Create a mini landscape 10.30 – 1.00 with Lisa Denham

Come and join in a collaborative workshop and help to create a mini landscape. Add as much or as little as you want using clay and things found in the woods. The woods will be the inspiration, the creatures that could be found there, or ones from your imagination.

Don’t Mess with Mother Earth 10.30 – 1.00 with Jacqueline Palmer

Re-using the material of the piece which is imbued with the elements Air, Water, Fire (Sun) , Earth and Spirit, this workshop expresses respect for the environment and will contribute to its protection through your Memory Bundle.

Earth 10.30 – 1.00 and 2.00 – 4.30 with Nita Rao

Help create roots to symbolically heal and hold our Earth together. Write down positive thoughts on ribbons of muslin and tie them inside the willow ‘Earth’. Wrap branches and twigs to create trees to take home as a reminder of these healing thoughts.

Felting with found objects 10.30 – 1.00 and 2.00 – 4.30 with Susheel Rao

Come and play with felting! Find a fallen stick, a stone or something similar and cover all or part with felt. We will have some pebbles if you prefer, a selection of coloured wools, and warm water to felt it all.

Make a fish with willow withies 10.30 – 1.00 and 2.00 – 4.30 with Jo Sheppard

In this workshop you will use willow withies and recycled materials to make two and three dimensional fish.

Charnwood’s Biggest Ever Woodland Arts Event

Into The Outwoods Sculpture Trail

27th April – 9th June

ArtSpace have won national funding to stage the biggest woodland art event to happen in Charnwood for decades, perhaps ever! Mountsorrel artist Nita Rao, main creator behind the event, has undertaken an 8 week ‘artist residency’ in the spectacular woodland setting to wet the public appetite and set the scene. This will be followed by a six week long sculpture trail leading through the woodland featuring artworks from eleven commissioned artists.

Some of Nita’s work at last years Into The Outwoods Sculpture Week.

The Sculpture Trail in Charnwood’s Outwoods, just outside Loughborough, will be opened with a weekend art event, including free creative drop-in workshops for the public, on 27th and 28th April. The Trail will be open until the 9th June. Nita’s residency started on 18th February and will continue until the opening of the Sculpture Trail.

Last years Into The Outwoods Sculpture Week.

Mountsorrel based photographer and ArtSpace member Tony Thory, said ‘last year’s smaller event was such a success, and because the public appetite for opportunities to be creative outdoors in beautiful natural surroundings was clearly so large, ArtSpace members decided to go all out and stage a bigger and better event that would last longer and meander through a large part of the woodland.’

Some of Nita’s work at last years Into The Outwoods Sculpture Week.

As artist in residence, Nita will spend 2 or 3 days a week developing new work in the woods from natural and found materials, taking inspiration from the Outwoods itself.

Some of Nita’s work at last years Into The Outwoods Sculpture Week.

The eleven commissioned artists will be creating and installing their work on site over the Easter holiday period, 15-26th April, allowing visitors to observe the process and talk with the artists.

Drop-in felt workshop at last years Into The Outwoods Sculpture Week..

The opening event for the Sculpture Trail will include two days of free public drop-in workshops developed in response to work in the trail. During the six week trail further free workshops will be held during a ‘sculpture-in-the-woods day’. Four day-long drop-in trail-based workshops will allow visitors to make work to take home as well as work on a larger collaborative piece to remain on the trail.

Drop-in willow workshop at last years Into The Outwoods Sculpture Week..

The Project has been generously supported by Arts Council England, The National Forest and Charnwood Borough Council. For further updated information see facebook – Into the Outwoods Sculpture Trail.

Sculpture Trail for Spring 2019 gets Official Support

Following the success of the ‘Into The Outwoods Sculpture Week’ event last spring, the Loughborough Outwoods Management Committee have given their approval to plans for a bigger and better event in spring 2019. The event will include free creative art workshops for the public as well as a six week long ‘Sculpture Trail’ through the woodland itself. The organisers, Loughborough ArtSpace, are now seeking funding to stage the event and make it a reality.
The event will take place next April/May and will follow on from an eight week ‘Artist Residency’ by local Sculptor Nita Rao in February/March. She will be making work in the woodland in response to the environment, temporary ephemeral work as well as more substantial pieces which may form elements of the sculpture trail. In addition ArtSpace hope to commission around 10 artists to make work specifically for the sculpture trail. All work for the trail will be installed mid April and the trail will be officially opened with a weekend event at the end of the easter holidays, 27/28 April, including free creative drop-in workshops for the public.
A full programme of events will be announced as the plans develop. You can also follow the event via facebook : IntoTheOutwwodsSculptureTrail2019.

Rosebery Art & Craft Fair

27TH JANUARY & 28RD OCTOBER 2018

VENUE: Rosebery Community Centre, Storer Road, LE11 5EQ

Some members of ArtSpace are taking part.

Rosebery Art and Craft Fair

Over 25 Leicestershire based artists and makers will be taking part in a new event this October. The Rosebery Community Centre on Storer Road in Loughborough will be hosting an Art and Craft Fair over the weekend of Saturday 27th and Sunday 28th October.

Among many of the creative disciplines represented will be painting, printmaking, textiles, sculpture, ceramics, photography, digital art, wood crafts, jewellery making, assemblage and wire sculpture. No two artists are alike, with styles varying from complete abstraction to more literal representation.

The venue is situated on Storer Road, Loughborough LE11 5EQ. Doors will be open from 11am to 5pm both days. There will be plenty of free parking and admission is free. Refreshments will also be available. Hope to see you there.

Please contact Jo Sheppard on 07984 316292 for any further information