Blackpool has a thriving art scene, it may fluctuate at times as do all artistic endeavors, however it is surviving and is an inspiration, partly due to my good friends there, Robin Ross from The Old Rock Factory where he has his screen printing studio, Dawn Mander and Kate Yates who are both street photographers capturing the alluring and the unusual in and around Blackpool.
I have been lucky enough to visit twice recently to collect some of their wonderful artwork from them to present in the gallery.
Friday 21st December did not seem like the ideal day to be traveling on the M6, however leaving Airdrie at 6am meant I arrived in Blackpool at 9am in time for breakfast at the wonderful Shaws Café. The oxygen was well and truly used up in the few hours I spent there, talking art of course, a subject close to our hearts.
Shaws Café has become a venue for art exhibitions with works of art now permanently displayed in there for sale from various artists who take their turn. My friends have used the café regularly for a few years now and collaborated with the owners to begin this mutually beneficial arrangement, a lesson to be leant for other towns and independent businesses.
A quick visit and to The Hive where Kate has an exhibition of her photography ranging from brightly coloured footwear to brightly coloured bubbles expertly captured by her trusty camera.
It was then time to focus on my mission, collecting artwork to offer for sale in the gallery, always an exciting thought, which to choose?
With the chosen artwork it was a posse helping to my car as we still had lots to talk about, simply not enough hours, another visit definitely required.
How lucky was I? The M6 was an unexpected dream to drive on the Friday before Christmas, which gave me time to curate the gallery before opening at 5pm. And it looked fantastic. Ready for the customers.
Featured image ‘A Seaside Bubble’ by Kate Yates