Mill Tye Gallery in Great Cornard confident of rebound as local arts hub following successful double exhibition launch
The popularity of a pair of new exhibitions, which began alongside an open studios event at the weekend, has shown the public’s enthusiasm for supporting local artists, according to an independent gallery owner.
Mill Tye Gallery in Great Cornard enjoyed a busy weekend to mark the opening of its autumn printworks exhibition, off the back of a successful summer showcase, as the venue builds back up from a long closure due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
Alongside a range of work by local printmakers, potters, sculptors and textile artists, which will be on display until November 28, the gallery also kicked off an exhibition of paintings by Suffolk’s own Bev Howe, running until September 26.
The double launch coincided with the Sudbury Art Trail, which started on Saturday and saw 10 artists throughout the area open their doors to visitors.
Peter Rumsey, owner of Mill Tye Gallery, said the venue was “getting back to being a hub for arts” in and around Sudbury.
“It was very much an art weekend for Sudbury,” he told Suffolk News. “A lot of people used the gallery as a springboard for starting their walk along the art trail. Saturday, especially, was a very busy day for us.
“I think it has been a tough time for everybody during Covid. I feel for all the pubs and restaurants as well, but galleries have been hit very hard. Generally, I think people are settling down and feeling more secure to come out to the gallery.
“We had returning customers who had not visited since before the first lockdown last March, and we had new customers discovering us for the first time. There was a great buzz about the gallery, which was really nice to see.
“It was like going back to 2019. It’s great that people are realising that artists have had a tough time of it and they are wanting to support local artists.
“We sold quite a lot of work, which helps to support them as well. A lot of our artists do it as a living and need income from sales, so it’s really important to promote their work.”
Following the end of the autumn exhibition, the gallery will begin a winter-themed display in December. For more information, click here.