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Tag : The Old Court

Draft Publication – The Exhibition Area

As I mentioned earlier in Section 2 I’ve decided on The Old Court for my exhibition. The Old Court in Windsor is a converted fire station which is the hub for Art in the community. It holds classes in dance and painting, has a local cinema and theatre as well as a well-populated friendly bar that acts a focus for community gossip. It is also central to the Windsor Festival, an Arts festival held every year in the Autumn which includes painting, sculpture, poetry reading, photography etc. As a result, it provides the local focus that I’m interested in for this exhibition.

The local photographic society meets in the building every week and includes a number of professional photographers in its ranks. I’m hoping for some interest from the attendees as they must walk past the exhibition to their meeting area thereby increasing my networking opportunities.

The location is shown in the images below which show another exhibition in the space though the furniture would not be there.

The main room is shown in the upper three images which is a room of the bar area. The last image show a wall in the bar area which can also be used. This last image shows the hanging method which isn’t ideal but is mandated by the Centre.

The display area with The Old Court is adjacent to the bar area with overflow possibilities in the bar area itself. I will be taking advantage of that space as a way of enticing the visitors to the bar into the main space. In addition, the display area is used as a possible to the to the cinema and to the area where classes such as dance classes are held, thus encouraging a greater footfall even it consists of casual viewers.

The layout is as shown below

Added Note – I’ve since discovered RoomSketcher, a free online tool for doing room plans etc. It’s a much better alternative to PowerPoint as above.

Three images will be placed in the bar area. I haven’t made a final decision on which images to place here but, at the moment, I’m leaning towards a couple that have the most picturesque impact to encourage people to come through to the main area. The other images will be in the main area and grouped, if I can, to emphasise similarities or complementary aspects of the images. I’m pretty certain now that I have my final images so I’ve started planning where each image should go but I think that things will change right up to the moment of hanging as I see what works in the actual location.

I’m still not sure how to frame and mount the images given the restrictions on hanging but I’m leaning towards a simple Foamex mount with no border or frame, allowing the images to “float” of the wall.

There are two books that I’m reading at the moment which provide interesting ideas for this exercise. The first is Shirley Read’s, Exhibiting Photograpy, which covers far more than I need but provides useful information on the installation.

The second is David Balzer’s, Curationism, which gives some interesting insights on curating an exhibition, even one’s own.

References

Balzer, D., 2014. Curationism: How Curating Took Over the Art World and Everything Else. London: Pluto Press.

Read, S., 2008. Exhibiting Photography: A Practical Guide to Choosing a Space, Displaying your Work, and Everything in Between.. Oxford: Elsevier.

Local Art Scene in Windsor

Given that my exhibition will be in Windsor and I’ve been doing a fair bit of research into venues and so forth I thought that it would be interesting to summarise the arts scene in the town. It would be simple to go back in history and recount details of some of the great authors and poets that have lived or stayed in Windsor such as Shakespeare himself who stayed here while writing The Merry Wives of Windsor. Thomas Hardy lived and worked in the town. Poets such as Tennyson, Marlow, Longfellow etc. all stayed in or around Windsor. Some of the early Victorian photographers such as Fenton and Frith were regular visitors and guests. More relevant is the thriving arts scene which facilitates the hosting of my exhibition.

I’ve already mention The Old Court in Windsor, the local arts centre. Here it’s possible to view photography or painting exhibitions, listen to concerts, attend a play, laugh at comedy acts or be educated by lectures, all in the same week.

The local Arts Society, strapline “Enriching Lives Through the Arts”, hosts lectures and arranges visits to local arts sites of interest. SOTA, The School of Arts, holds classes for dance, singing and drama for children throughout the year. The Contemporary Arts Fair, held every year, brings together over 160 artists, printmakers, photographers, sculptors, ceramicists and selected galleries from the UK and Europe.

Windsor Theatre is a beautiful building in the shadow of Windsor Castle and hosts a wide repertoire with many productions transferring directly to the West End. The Castle itself is host to much of the Royal Collection with works ranging from van Dyck to Wedgewood and a whole room devoted to Reubens.

There are a number of art galleries catering to the tourist industry which I could have utilised for my exhibition but chose The Old Court because of its local nature.

Every year the Windsor Festival hosts music, tours, events and exhibitions as well as organising, with the Fringe (see below), a number of open houses where local artists open their houses and workshops to visitors. Associated with the festival is the International String Competition which is one of the foremost competitions of its kind in the world.

And, of course, Windsor has its very own Fringe, perhaps not as well known as Edinburgh but it is the second oldest in the UK after Edinburgh. The Festival can claim to have started under the aegis of Yehudi Menuhin whilst the Fringe can claim the active support as judges of Hilary Mantel, Fay Weldon, Kenneth Branagh, Nina Bawden and numerous others.

In summary, it’s clear that Windsor has a thriving Arts scene which has made it comparatively easy to organise my exhibition but, at the same time, it’s slightly disconcerting to be dipping a toe into an environment populated by so many prestigious names.