Tonbridge artists make a creative connection

ArtSpring Gallery 2

A vibrant group of talented creative professionals have formed a collective to open the new town centre ArtSpring Gallery.

The store at 167 High Street, Tonbridge features a wealth of works from leading regional painters, printmakers and an award-winning photographer.

Hildegard Pax, a specialist in glass, has been encouraged by how the business, which operates on a basis of sharing profits between its 18-strong collective, has been well received in its first few weeks of opening.

The initiative had been inspired by the success of art exhibitions. One of these events, at Tonbridge School in 2013, was titled ArtSpring and this provided the gallery with its name.

Hildegard, who lives near Tonbridge, and has previously exhibited her own work at the Royal Academy, said: “We set up the collective four years ago for various exhibitions in Tonbridge which went really well.

That encouraged us to find a more permanent space in the town, as we believe it is an up-and-coming place with many new things happening.

“We thought it is just what Tonbridge needs and we’ve been overwhelmed by the positive feedback that we have had for the gallery.

“I’ve been very impressed with the variety of work that we’ve managed to feature, as well as the sales we have made so far,” said the artist.

ArtSpring Gallery 2

The collective members contribute to the maintenance of the gallery through being on a staff rota. It features professional and semi-professional works showcasing painting, printmaking, jewellery and images by acclaimed photographer Mark Welland.

One of its main aims has been to make artworks accessible in terms of pricing, with items available between £2.50 through to £500. It is open Tuesday-Saturday 10.30am-5.30pm, and Sundays 11am-4pm.

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