View new Hertfordshire art exhibition online during the cornonavirus lockdown

PUBLISHED: 19:40 02 April 2020 | UPDATED: 20:26 02 April 2020

Permindar Kaur, Yellow Birds (2019), forms part of the Hertfordshire Open Exhibition, which can be viewed online at UH Arts and St Albans Museum + Gallery websites

Permindar Kaur, Yellow Birds (2019), forms part of the Hertfordshire Open Exhibition, which can be viewed online at UH Arts and St Albans Museum + Gallery websites

Permindar Kaur

A major new art exhibition will launch online after the closure of a prestigious Hertfordshire gallery during the current coronavirus pandemic.

Maria Meyer, Save Us From Ourselves (2019), forms part of the Hertfordshire Open Exhibition which can be viewed online at UH Arts and St Albans Museum + Gallery websitesMaria Meyer, Save Us From Ourselves (2019), forms part of the Hertfordshire Open Exhibition which can be viewed online at UH Arts and St Albans Museum + Gallery websites

The first Hertfordshire Open Exhibition was due to have opened at St Albans Museum + Gallery this weekend.

Featuring 80 stunning works, it will now be launched digitally online on Friday, April 3.

The exhibition is a celebration of art in all its mediums, including painting, sculpture, print, film and photography, and forms part of a wider offer for people to access the arts from home.

Over 180 artists with links to Hertfordshire submitted their work to be part of the inaugural exhibition.

Alex Ayliffe, Study II (2019), forms part of the Hertfordshire Open Exhibition which can be viewed online at UH Arts and St Albans Museum + Gallery websites. Picture: Pippa Bicknell PhotographyAlex Ayliffe, Study II (2019), forms part of the Hertfordshire Open Exhibition which can be viewed online at UH Arts and St Albans Museum + Gallery websites. Picture: Pippa Bicknell Photography

Chosen by an independent panel of judges, the exhibition features works by the 50 selected artists, creating an exciting mix of work by established artists alongside emerging talent and first-time exhibitors.

The online galleries will be launched in phases over a period of 10 days at www.uharts.co.uk and www.stalbansmuseums.org.uk starting on Friday.

Commenting on the exhibition, Annabel Lucas, head of UH Arts at the University of Herfordshire in Hatfield, said: “We are so pleased to be able to still deliver the Hertfordshire Open, giving people remote access to this remarkable collection of artists.

“You’ll see art you love, art that makes you smile and art that really makes you think.

“We are grateful to all of the artists who submitted their work and were overwhelmed by the quality and variety of the submissions which have helped to create a truly exciting exhibition.”

The judging panel for the exhibition included Annabel Lucas and Phil Healey, Dean of the School of Creative Arts at the University of Hertfordshire, artist Liz West, and Maurice Davies, former head of collections at the Royal Academy of Arts.

The online exhibition is sponsored by Marks & Tilt Gallery, and is part of the Hertfordshire Year of Culture 2020.

St Albans councillor Anthony Rowlands, portfolio holder for community, leisure and sport at the district council, said: “St Albans Museum + Gallery has put art, culture and heritage at the heart of our community.

“In this unprecedented time, I am delighted to see that the museum’s partnership with UH Arts continues to innovate in order to keep bringing great art to the community.

“This online exhibition looks to be a wonderfully varied showcase of the very best talent working in the region.”

The Hertfordshire Open 2020 is the seventh partnership project between St Albans Museum + Gallery and UH Arts, the University of Hertfordshire’s arts and cultural programme.

The partnership has already secured a number of firsts. The St Albans museum, housed in the former town hall, hosted the first exhibition outside of London in 2018 for Hayward Gallery’s touring exhibition Hand Drawn and Action Packed.

Last year thousands of visitors flocked to see Barbara Hepworth: Artist in Society 1948-53 – an exhibition that explored a significant period in the life of one of Britain’s most celebrated artists and saw several of her works united for the very first time.

The Hertfordshire Open 2020 Online forms part of a wider programme of activities to help people access the arts from their homes during the COVID-19 lockdown.

As part of the project Create It + Share It, UH Arts has commissioned 10 artists to develop creative activities for all ages to enjoy at home at www.uharts.co.uk

It is also posting content online @UniHertsArts each Wednesday exploring the extensive art collection at the university, including sculptures, photography and painting.

At St Albans Museum + Gallery, the Handley Page: A Brief History of the Radlett Aerodrome exhibition will also be made available online at www.stalbansmuseums.org.uk

Online visitors are also invited to take part in the Paper Plane Engineering event online on Wednesday, April 8.


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