ART MARKET launch attracts 1500 visitors

Saturday 19th September saw the launch of Making Art Work’s very first Art Market at Maidstone’s historic Lockmeadow Market Hall. More than 1500 visitors made their way to the event attracted by over 85 stalls featuring contemporary artists from Kent and the South East.

These national and internationally exhibiting artists later reported the event created the perfect platform to sell work direct to the public and to secure commissions and course bookings. It generated some great networking opportunities and also resulted in some artists being signed up by galleries.

The event project manager, Ali Farmer said: ‘with over 190 visitors coming through the door in just the first hour, it confirmed the interest and demand for such an event in Maidstone. And the public and buyers just kept coming.’

An eclectic program of singers, poets, dancers and performers entertained throughout the whole day. Highlights included the superb poet Bill Lewis, the very unique Anacoda Bellydance (image below left) and singer songwriter Rosie Ord. All acts were organised by Lili Westlake, the creative mind behindArty Farty open mic and art events. A charity auction was hosted by Channel 4’s Four Rooms, Raj Bisram, who raised £1383.60 for Maidstone and Mid Kent MIND and The Foundling Museum. The auction featured works and generous donations by Ralph Steadman, Billy Childish, Gavin Turk, Stuart Semple (ambassador of Mind), Sadie Hennessey, celebrity double Olympic gold winner Dame Kelly Holmes as well as many more, and all lots were sold.

‘It was a wonderful event that was very much in line with our own philosophy of philanthropy within the arts and support to emerging artists!’ (The Foundling Museum)

The Art Market team is grateful for the invaluable support offered by sponsors Gilbert and Clark Frame & Print and the Print Workshop, and would like to thank everyone who attended the event, exhibited or performed. Looking forward, Ali Farmer commented: ’ we are about to start planning for 2016 and have lots of ideas to enable us to build on the success of the event and make the next ART MARKET even more successful.’


Images curtesy of Ali Farmer & Alex Paterson