Art in the Park returns with over 120 artists

Stephanie Kerr, executive director at BID Leamington, Carole Sleight, organiser of Art in the Park, with Art in the Park committee members and exhibitors.
Stephanie Kerr, executive director at BID Leamington, Carole Sleight, organiser of Art in the Park, with Art in the Park committee members and exhibitors.

Over 120 artists from across Leamington are teaming up to showcase their work at a two-day festival celebrating the arts.

Art in the Park will return for its third year to Jephson Gardens on Saturday August 6 and Sunday August 7, with more than 5,000 visitors expected to attend.

Music, theatre, paintings, sculpture, textiles and jewellery will all feature at the festival.

Festival organiser Carole Sleight said: “Art in the Park has proved to be a fantastic and free family day in a stunning location which also works as a wonderful opportunity for Warwickshire artists of all disciplines to showcase, demonstrate and sell their work all in one place.

“With the amount of art and activities on offer – from free workshops, music and theatre – we know visitors will get a huge amount of value from the weekend and leave with many great memories, new skills and inspirational ideas.

“We’re delighted to once again have had so much support and interest from the county and district councils, BID Leamington, local businesses and of course the artists who have made it popular for another year.”

There will be blues, soul and jazz performances from 12 different bands across the two days.

Leading UK theatre production company Motionhouse will perform Lost, a physical dance piece free for guests to attend, and the Pauline Quirke Academy will entertain with an extract from Beauty and the Beast.

Stagecoach Theatre School has also devised a special camouflage performance piece.

Other action includes workshops ranging from upcycling to bespoke T-shirt designing as well as a pottery throw down, where five local celebrities will compete against each other to create a slab in front of a live audience.

Warwickshire Beer Company and Leamington Wine Company will also be present. They are hosting a craft beer tent and a bar and gin palace respectively.

Stephanie Kerr, executive director of BID Leamington which helped to make the event a permanent fixture in the town, said: “Leamington has a wonderfully diverse creative community and it’s important we support them as they both attract visitors and help make the town such a vibrant place to live.

“We are very lucky to have so many creative people involved in innovative and exciting projects and Art in the Park does a fantastic job of highlighting all their talent.”

The theme behind this year’s festival is camouflage, inspired by Leamington Camouflage Group – a group of landscape painters and set designers who were employed during World War II to disguise bombing targets by creatively painting fake road markings onto rooftops.

To honour their work, more than 70 people have contributed to a community yarn bombing installation in the Gardens, and the Czechoslovak Memorial Fountain will also be camouflaged over the weekend to highlight its historical importance.