Covering the coast, Burnham Market, Wells, Holt & surrounding villages

In the picture

14th July 2021

Get set for a show-stopping summer of exhibitions on the local art scene. Amanda Loose gets a picture-perfect preview

Scroll through the gallery for image details

First up, Bircham Gallery in Holt, whose vibrant annual Summer Show opens on 17 July, with works by selected artists including paintings and felted birds by Russell Wilson, who is new to the gallery. His life-like bird sculptures, like the ‘Curlew’, pictured, are made using the technique of needle felting, a process of turning wool fibres into a solid three-dimensional form.

The show continues until 8 September and will be followed by an exhibition of abstract textile works by Helen Terry – created using dye, mark-making and hand stitch – and ceramics by Barbara Gittings, who specialises in Nerikomi techniques, from 11 September to 6 October. 01263 713312, www.birchamgallery.co.uk

Across town, make way for ‘The Carnival of Animals’ at The Red Dot Gallery over on Fish Hill – a collection of 14 new paintings by artist Wendy Mould. Created over the past three years, the works take their inspiration from the music of Saint-Saëns. 

Rather than a purely literal approach, Wendy cloaks her paintings in theatrics, colour and sparkle. ‘The Tortoise’ for example, supports a can-can dancer; ‘The Wild Ass’ is ridden with gusto through the circus camp and beyond, while ‘The Cuckoo’, pictured, lends his song to a fellow musician in the depths of the woods. The oil on canvas works will be on exhibit at the gallery from 20 July to 4 August. 01263 710287 www.thereddotgallery.com

Salthouse Church will be playing host to 4 Art’s Sake, an exhibition of colourful and varied works by four artists from 31 July to 15 August, 10.30am to 4pm. Terry Beard’s abstract screen prints will sit alongside pastel drawings and paintings by Chris Hann, ceramics by Stephen Murfitt, and paintings and drawings by Tony Keeler. www.terrybeardart.com

Our next stop is Pinkfoot Gallery in Cley, who will have a larger than usual collection of bronzes over the summer – think owls by sculptor Anthony Theakston and Stephen Page’s uniquely coloured bronzes. Plus, there are folk-styled wood carvings of birds and fish by Stephen Henderson as well as Barbara Franc’s eye-catching wire and bits and bobs sculptures.

On the walls, they’ve booked in artists including Peter Wileman, Daniel Cole, John Foker, Jane Hodgson, Suzanne Lawrence and Rachel Lockwood and also have the largest collection of work on show by renowned local printmaker, Robert Gillmor.

Pinkfoot strive to make art accessible and have a collection of small works by various artists – from gorgeous handmade stoneware birds by Elissa Falser starting at just £25, to raku animal forms from Sam Fitzgerald-Scales, Stephanie Cunningham’s ceramics, and hand-made prints from £50. 01263 740947, www.pinkfootgallery.co.uk

Over in Wells, Gallery Plus’ Summer Exhibition offers their signature colourful mix of contemporary glass, ceramics, sculpture, jewellery, paintings and prints from their artists and makers in this bright, naturally lit gallery space. Artist Trevor Woods, who works from his studio at Gallery Plus, has a vibrant collection of new local paintings on show, and as you’ll most likely have seen, his ‘Little Yellow Boat, Wells East Quay’ is our front cover star this issue. 01328 711609, www.gallery-plus.co.uk

We’re heading west to Burnham Overy Staithe’s Boathouse, where local artist Pamela Noyes will be showing around 25 paintings, mainly oils, of coastal scenes and florals from 23 July to 2 August, 10am to 6pm, her latest ‘harvest’ of paintings which she’s been working on over the last year.

It’s five years since Pamela told me her then show in The Boathouse would be her last solo exhibition, but she says, “the journey’s not over yet; I am really enjoying painting and don’t think I’ll ever stop.” Her studio is open by appointment too over the summer, call 01328 738745 or 07798 692352.

Burnham Market is our next stop, and Burnham Grapevine Gallery, who continue to show an ever-changing mix of contemporary paintings and ceramics. New to the gallery is local artist, Peta Wainwright, whose paintings give a fresh interpretation of the Norfolk landscape tradition. These hang alongside prints and paintings by Max Angus, Michael Chapman, Mari French, Brian Hinton, Gerard Stamp and Simon Wilde. The gallery will open on limited weekday mornings through the summer season, from 10am to 2pm, and by appointment – contact burnhamgrapevine@gmail.comwww.grapevinecontemporary.com

Staying in Burnham Market, Laura at Pocock’s the artmonger is delighted to welcome old friend, Tom Cringle, to the gallery. An architect before turning his hand to painting, Tom’s free, loose, immediate style beautifully captures the colour and light of North Norfolk coast, and his work will be a regular fixture in the gallery. 

Meanwhile, at HortiCo Nursery & Garden Emporium at Drove Orchards, Thornham, Laura continues to show a selection of work by artists and artisans which complement the horticultural surroundings. 01328 730370, www.theartmonger.co.uk

Back in Burnham Market, Fairfax Gallery are holding their 20th Anniversary Show from 17 July to 31 August, featuring paintings and prints by some of their most sought-after artists, including David Atkins, Jack Frame, and Alice Scrutton. The gallery’s artists have been working hard over the past few months to produce some fantastic new work and more will be arriving throughout the summer. 01328 730001, www.fairfaxgallery.com

Local artist Karen Adams has a solo exhibition in Brancaster Staithe Village Hall from 7 to 12 August, 11am to 5pm daily. Karen paints mostly coastal landscapes in oil, predominantly en plein air (including boats, beaches and beach huts, creeks, marshes and coastal villages).  Paintings vary in size from small up to large canvases (130cm x 80cm), and she also has a range of prints and cards available. For more details or to arrange a visit to her studio, call or text 07785 932340. www.karenadamsart.co.uk

Brancaster Staithe Village Hall will also be playing host to five local artists – Judi Tussaud, Pat Bustin, Rebecca Lloyd, Liz Pearce Roberts and Deanee Clark – from 27 to 30 August, 10am to 5pm daily. Expect to see work featuring Norfolk’s big skies and coastal scenes in oils and pastel, colourful expressionist landscapes, watercolour botanical studies and paintings of wildlife, plus acrylic abstracts and still lifes. Free admission, donations to Tapping House.

Rebecca Lloyd’s Docking studio is also open by appointment throughout the year – email bex@rebeccalloyd.co.uk or call 07977 227708. There’s plenty of new work to see there this summer and you can also keep up to date virtually via Instagram @rebeccalloydartist or at www.rebeccalloyd.co.uk.

If you’re visiting Holkham, their Courtyard Gift Shop stocks Rebecca’s limited-edition prints, and there’s an original in the Courtyard Café.

We’re hotfooting it to Holme now, where abstract silkscreen print artist Constance Read will be exhibiting her latest series of works ‘Sea Fire’ in her studio there from 7 to 17 August, by appointment. After completing her degree at Central St Martins, Constance now works in her printing studio where she uses bright colours to depict her own versions of abstract seascapes, using natural shapes from local beaches in different ways. She’ll be going back to study for a Masters in Print at the Royal College of Art in September. 07946 895718, www.constanceread.co.uk

We’re dashing to Dersingham next, where Ben Mullarkey and June Mullarkey will be hosting their 49th Summer Exhibition from 10 July to 5 September at Dersingham Pottery & Gallery. Ben’s paintings in acrylic on canvas, prints and cards sit alongside June’s hand-thrown stoneware and porcelain pieces. They will also be opening their garden as part of Dersingham Open Gardens on the weekend of 4 and 5 September; keep an eye on the event’s website for more details www.dersinghamopengardens.co.uk. 01485 540761, www.dersinghampottery.co.uk

There’s a busy season ahead over at West Acre Gallery. August’s exhibitions include ‘natural lines 2021’, showcasing ceramics, paintings, sculpture and textiles by North Norfolk artists Elaine Banham, James Crisp, Alison Henry, Norfolk Makrs, Don Seed and Kate Vogler, from 1 to 7 of the month. 

Next up at the venue will be Great Bircham artist, Sue Vaughan-Williams, with ‘Altered Horizons – Which Way from Here?’ an exhibition of paintings considering change and hope, from 14 to 21 August. www.susanvaughanwilliams.co.uk

Ceramic artist Gokce Ozer Eroz, founder and owner of ceramics studio Mindful Atelier in Holt, will be at West Acre Gallery from 24 to 29 August, with ‘Home is Where You Belong’ an exhibition featuring her functional and decorative handmade ceramics inspired by home shapes. 

 “I have travelled a lot and had the chance to live in other counties, but this is the first time that I feel I’m home,” says Gokce. “This feeling made me think about what is home and why our homes are so important.”

And if you’re in Holt, be sure to pop into Mindful Atelier to browse Gokce’s colourful collection of mugs, planters and much more. www.westacregallery.co.uk; www.mindfulatelier.co.uk

Throughout the summer, you’ll be able to see Sarah Caswell creating large works in her studio at Great Walsingham Barns for the 2021 RHS Chelsea Flower Show, being held in late September for the first time in 108 years. At the same time, she is also expanding the series of small original paintings for you to love and leave the gallery with. 07747 613395, www.sarahcaswell.co.uk

Next door, in the wider gallery, expect to see the very latest limited edition prints from the ever-sought-after Nicky Litchfield and Sam Toft, framed to perfection by Walsingham Gallery & Framing. 01328 820900, www.walsinghamgalleryandframing.co.uk

And so, to Creake Abbey, for a pit stop in the Café which is hosting ‘Norfolk Hedgerows’, an exhibition by Barbara King, with paintings in acrylic on paper and canvas inspired by the wildflowers and grasses found on Norfolk’s hedgerows, roadside verges, meadows and wasteland. Coffee, homemade cakes and art? The perfect way to finish my whistle-stop tour! 01328 730399, www.creakeabbey.co.uk

Before making a special journey, please contact the gallery or artist or check their website for the latest up-to-date information and opening times.