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Studios open their doors for Site Festival

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Site Festival, which runs from June 1-23rd, is an annual programme of artist-led projects; events, exhibitions, talks and directory of Open Studios in the Stroud district and was established in 1997.

Open Studios is part of the wider programme of Site Festival, allowing artists to explore, develop projects and open their work up to the public. For visitors it means there are six routes to follow across the district, on which artists open their studios for two weekends.

Open Studios 2024 will be 8th-9th June and 15th-16th June and there are new artist hubs to visit this year such as Gossington Hall near Slimbridge, two young artists at the Ale House, Sprung24 at Prema in Uley, a new exhibition barn space at Hawkwood CFT and Lower Street Atelier.

We’re also introducing Bursary artists as part of the programme, featuring early-career artists who have been paired with mentors which will produce some interesting collaborations, such as Nat Sloan working on a performance in SVA’s Sculpture Studio.

Site Festival Programme    

Each year the festival programme seeks to challenge boundaries, bring high calibre exhibitions and installations to Stroud, and raise awareness of the incredible diversity in the arts. Even though Stroud is small, we’ve got a big art scene.

For 2024 Mat Collishaw presents Sky Burial; an immersive video installation and meditation on life, death and humanity set to Gabriel Fauré’s Requiem. Sky Burial is a 35 minute film to accompany an audio 3D, surround sound version, being screened at the Goods Shed.

web SKY BURIAL Vulture c Mat Collishaw Vlaams Radiokoor | Studios open their doors for Site Festival
Sky Burial.

Fauré’s Requiem was recorded at the premiere performance of Sky Burial at London’s Barbican Centre on November 20, 2023. The performances by The Insula Orchestra and Ascentus chorus, conducted by Laurence Equilbey, were captured and have been spatially mixed for d&b Audio Soundscape by Loss Gain at Rattle & Brash, Stroud.

Also new for 2024 is Why We Linger from the Jennifer Lauren Gallery, to be shown at SVA’s John Street Gallery. Passionately championing self-taught, disabled, neurodivergent and overlooked artists from around the world, the Jennifer Lauren Gallery is showcasing all the artists the Gallery represents in one display. Following its launch in London, Why We Linger features a diverse mixture of drawings, paintings, embroidery and ceramics.

white backgroundChris Neate Why We Linger 2018 White ink pen on MDF board 30cm diameter 12 inch diameter Photo by Ellie Walmsley | Studios open their doors for Site Festival
Chris Neate, Why We Linger, 2018, White ink pen on MDF board, 30cm diameter, 12 inch diameter. Pic: Ellie Walmsley

We’re also really excited to announce Palestinian artist and activist Taqi Spateen is in the UK to work with artists and communities to create five large-scale murals, in the first weekend of June.

Taqi Spateen graphic | Studios open their doors for Site Festival
Taqi Spateen.

Graffiti art is a major cultural force in Palestine, and at SVA (Stroud) and Picturedrome (Gloucester) we’re honoured to be part of these collaborations. Taqi Spateen has created many murals on the wall including The Boy with the Goldfish Bowl, showing a child with what is left after the destruction of his childhood home, a series of portraits of George Floyd, and his collaboration with the brand The North Face, Walls Are Meant For Climbing. Now creating and exhibiting internationally, Spateen draws inspiration from the Palestinian countryside, particularly the olive tree, one of the most famous of all Palestinian symbols.

Some events for Site Festival are ticketed, but most are free – so we highly recommend you take a look at the programme and take your pick, while also visiting Open Studios to learn more about individual artists.

Instagram : https://www.instagram.com/sitefestival/

Facebook : https://www.facebook.com/SiteFestival

Email : site@sva.org.uk

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