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Art festival returns to the islands this weekend

Art Scilly returns this weekend for its seventh year.

The annual festival aims to highlight the diverse range of artists on the islands, with around 20 workshops, craft fairs and exhibition previews on St Mary's, St Martins and St Agnes.

Studios and galleries will also open across the islands during the event, which runs from May 5th to 14th.

Stained glass artist Oriel Hicks, who teaches classes from Phoenix Craft Workshops on St Mary's, said that the programme is smaller this year than usual as there is a gap in the festival's funding.

She said: "We had funding last year and will have it next year, but there's none this year. It's not a huge programme this time but there's still lots to do.

"It's really a link year between last and next to whet the appetite for future years when it will be bigger and better with more funding."

Preview exhibitions include Tracey Elphick's paintings (below) at Tamarisk Gallery in Hugh Town on Saturday (May 6th) and Sue Lewington's sketchbooks at North Farm Gallery on St Martins on Sunday (May 7th).

There will also be opportunities to work with oil on canvas with Steve Sherris, make a fused glass keyring or coaster, or create a journal, as well as try mandala drawings, sketches, silk painting, linocut printing and portraits.

Oriel added: "We try to make it open to all, so that even if you have minimal talent or none whatsoever you will end up with something that looks fantastic in all the classes. There's something for those who are artistic and for those who aspire to be."

Sunday May 7th also sees the return of the One Act Play Festival, now in its sixth year. Four one-act plays written by locals will be performed by St Mary’s Theatre Club as rehearsed readings, with minimal props and scenery. The event is adjudicated by writer and radio producer Paul Dodgson, with the winner chosen by the audience. It starts at 2pm at the Church Hall.

The full Art Scilly programme is available here.


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