Joyce Laing OBE
Sadly, Joyce Laing OBE, died on July 17 2022. She was one of the founders, in 1981, of the Pittenweem Arts Festival and was a director on the Festival Board, till she stood down in 2007.
Joyce’s contribution to conceiving the Festival and her continuing commitment to its aims were instrumental to the Festival’s continuity and success.
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Joyce at Invited Artist Steven Campbell’s exhibition in 2014.
About the Festival
Now in its 39th year, Pittenweem Arts Festival continues to delight. With just over 20,000 visitors coming each year to experience the art on display, workshops and events we know that the mix must be just about right.
As it all takes place in such a beautiful village, which is guaranteed splendid weather at Festival time, a visit is definitely rewarding.
There are well over 100 artists, displaying their work throughout the village: mainly in houses but also in garages, halls, sheds and really anywhere that has a place to hang or place artwork.
This is the surprising and endearing feature of the Festival, to come across art presented in a house or in a normally featureless garage Here it is, an array of landscapes, an explosion of colour in textiles, a selection of paintings or a collection of fine-worked jewellery. Because you’re not in a formal gallery, it’s actually easier to appreciate the artist’s work and you’ll have the opportunity to talk with the artist.
Early on in the festival’s development, we found that many artists wanted the chance to show work perhaps for the first time or to test the waters with just a couple of paintings. The Open Art Exhibition offered such an opportunity.
This very popular show is open to any artist, amateur or professional giving exposure to new talent. This is a chance for buyers to discover something different from among the 100 or so artworks on show.
For 2022 the exhibition moves to the larger venue of the Church Hall on James Street.
2022 Award Winner: Sophie Fields
Our highly -successful scheme to promote beginning artists and provide them with an unequalled opportunity to exhibit, goes from strength to strength. We provide a venue for the exhibition and a sizeable cash sum to cover all costs.
With this kind of support and the recognition of the award, beginning artists have the opportunity to exhibit their work and because it’s Pittenweem with the large number of visitors, they have a chance to meet with prospective buyers and promote their art.
Our yearly invitation to several internationally known and respected artists has resulted in acclaimed and innovatory shows.
Our Invited Artists leave the art circuit to mount and curate the show themselves. They have a free hand to select and display work they have chosen or created specially for Pittenweem.
This results in comments from Graham Rich naming his 2017 show as: my best and Glen Onwin in 2018 saying: a fairly complex install as I expected but I have enjoyed it greatly.
Invited Artist Calum Colvin’s exhibition 2019
Paul Furneaux (r) 2017 Invited Artist giving a mokuhanga, Japanese printing workshop
Because of Covid, we plan to hold only workshops and talks. There will be no larger scale events.
When you’re in Pittenweem for the Festival, it’s easy to recognise that this is an artistic community.
What is not so easily noticeable is that there are about 30 artists resident in the village. Coupled with this is the very healthy number of galleries; Pittenweem sustains its artistic reputation through the galleries which, after the festival throngs have gone, remain open all year round.
The Royal Burgh of Pittenweem Arts Festival
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