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Inaugural Class Arts exhibition in Long Melford hailed as 'resounding success'




A new art collective’s inaugural exhibition and sale in Long Melford has been hailed as a resounding success, as local creators displayed their work in public for the first time in more than six months.

Approximately 200 people attended the Old School Community Centre over the weekend for the two-day exhibition held by Class Arts, a group of artists based in Sudbury and Long Melford that formed during the coronavirus lockdown.

Organised by Suffolk Art Society members Julie Iveson and Vernon Lever, the event served as the first showcase for the artists since the pandemic forced the widespread cancellation of events from March.

Class Arts, a new collective of artists from the Sudbury and Long Melford area, staged their first exhibition at the weekend..Pictured: Organisers Julie Iveson and Vernon J Lever...PICTURE: Mecha Morton.. (42638605)
Class Arts, a new collective of artists from the Sudbury and Long Melford area, staged their first exhibition at the weekend..Pictured: Organisers Julie Iveson and Vernon J Lever...PICTURE: Mecha Morton.. (42638605)

A variety of paintings were sold between £30 and £120, as well as unframed work and cards, while a raffle was also held, featuring a painting of Long Melford donated by Vernon, which was won by Sue Buck.

To comply with current regulations, social distancing and track-and-trace measures were implemented at the venue, while all attendees were required to wear face coverings.

Julie said: “The good weather on Sunday bought a much larger footfall, to the point where we occasionally had to ask people to wait outside until social distancing could be maintained.

Class Arts, a new collective of artists from the Sudbury and Long Melford area, staged their first exhibition at the weekend..Pictured: Frances Barthorpe...PICTURE: Mecha Morton.. (42638603)
Class Arts, a new collective of artists from the Sudbury and Long Melford area, staged their first exhibition at the weekend..Pictured: Frances Barthorpe...PICTURE: Mecha Morton.. (42638603)

“The sales were beyond our expectations, with three artists even achieving record sales.

“Visitors thoroughly enjoyed the event and thanked us for putting the exhibition on.

“Some were amazed at the standard of the work and others enjoyed a trip out after the last six months.

Class Arts, a new collective of artists from the Sudbury and Long Melford area, staged their first exhibition at the weekend..Pictured: Chris Bishop...PICTURE: Mecha Morton.. (42638599)
Class Arts, a new collective of artists from the Sudbury and Long Melford area, staged their first exhibition at the weekend..Pictured: Chris Bishop...PICTURE: Mecha Morton.. (42638599)

“Together with fantastic card sales, there was something for everyone, with many doing a spot of Christmas shopping.

“We would like to thank the public for supporting our first event.”

Julie added that the Class Arts group is now aiming to stage a second exhibition some time next spring, and is looking forward to welcoming visitors back.

Class Arts, a new collective of artists from the Sudbury and Long Melford area, staged their first exhibition at the weekend..Pictured: Rosemary Bayliss...PICTURE: Mecha Morton.. (42638600)
Class Arts, a new collective of artists from the Sudbury and Long Melford area, staged their first exhibition at the weekend..Pictured: Rosemary Bayliss...PICTURE: Mecha Morton.. (42638600)
Class Arts, a new collective of artists from the Sudbury and Long Melford area, staged their first exhibition at the weekend..Pictured: Dorothy Bishop...PICTURE: Mecha Morton.. (42638601)
Class Arts, a new collective of artists from the Sudbury and Long Melford area, staged their first exhibition at the weekend..Pictured: Dorothy Bishop...PICTURE: Mecha Morton.. (42638601)
Class Arts, a new collective of artists from the Sudbury and Long Melford area, staged their first exhibition at the weekend..Pictured: Bernice Lewington...PICTURE: Mecha Morton.. (42638602)
Class Arts, a new collective of artists from the Sudbury and Long Melford area, staged their first exhibition at the weekend..Pictured: Bernice Lewington...PICTURE: Mecha Morton.. (42638602)
Class Arts, a new collective of artists from the Sudbury and Long Melford area, staged their first exhibition at the weekend..Pictured: Trish Turner ...PICTURE: Mecha Morton.. (42638604)
Class Arts, a new collective of artists from the Sudbury and Long Melford area, staged their first exhibition at the weekend..Pictured: Trish Turner ...PICTURE: Mecha Morton.. (42638604)