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Bucks Art Weeks 2023

Updated: Jul 9, 2023

Bucks Art Weeks: An Artistic Journey

This year I had the incredible opportunity to take part in an exhibition with the Stony Stratford Artists Group during Bucks Art Weeks. This annual event in Buckinghamshire, England, showcases the remarkable talents of local artists, and this time (and for the first time!), I had the privilege of taking part in this exhibition. Art Weeks take place in many counties and I have seen them country wide.

Stony Stratford Artists Group:

When I was approached about participating in the Stony Stratford Artists Group exhibition for Bucks Art Weeks 2023, I contacted and then met with the hosts (Laurie and Lesley Keck). As a “newbie” to Art Weeks it was a little daunting! Actually for someone who suffers from anxiety it was very daunting !…. but I shouldn’t have worried. Laurie and Lesley were wonderful. I actually felt at ease even just seeing the rugby sign in the window !

Laurie and Lesley welcomed me and my art to take part at their home alongside 3 other artists in that location and with two other artists locally. We created the Stony Stratford Artists Group. Through our meetings and discussions, I was inspired and encouraged by the diverse art shared among the group members as well as their friendliness and camaraderie to make this Art event successful.

The Stony Stratford Artists Group for Bucks Art Weeks are: Laurie and Lesley Keck, Anna Woodhead, Sam Burke, Jennifer McAllister, Mimi Tobot, John Garrad and myself

Preparing for the Exhibition:

In the months leading up to the exhibition, I worked on creating a body of work that would resonate with our visitors (I hoped!) I created a “Stony Stratford Safari” with tigers, lions, an elephant , and other safari animals. I also included paintings of British wildlife, many found local to Stony Stratford and Milton Keynes. The local animals included wild Konik ponies which roam the flood plains north of Milton Keynes and otters living by the local river.

Collaboration and camaraderie were at the heart of our preparations. The members of the Stony Stratford Artists Group were amazing to work with. We had a couple of meetings to discuss some of the logistics and divide up the jobs. Sam Burke and I met outside of this to work on a social media strategy. I loved working with Sam, whose art I had admired for a while online before meeting her. Between us I think we did a damn good job! Our last get together was at MK gallery so had the very enjoyable exhibition of Boyd and Evans to explore after.

Unveiling our artistic endeavours:

Laurie and Lesley brought together artists who had never collaborated together and for some of us it was our first Bucks Art Weeks. Lesley and Jenny curated the hanging of the work and did an excellent job ! Walking into the gallery space (which really took over the downstairs of their home as well as their garden), we had achieved together an amazing exhibition of work. reflecting the diverse range of styles and themes explored by the group members. The garden was stunning ! Laurie makes incredible sculptures which were displayed in the most stunning of locations. Their garden is very much a favourite venue during open gardens, Lesley having been a garden designer.

Engaging with fellow artists and visitors was a highlight of the exhibition. Conversations sparked, ideas flowed, and connections were forged. As we were in two locations we had our very own art trail. Mimi and John welcomed us before the exhibition started so we could properly visit them. Really counting myself very lucky to have met such wonderful people. We all had work in both venues and I particularly liked John’s sound installation.

Looking back

Beyond the exhibition, my journey with the Stony Stratford Artists Group left a mark on my creative path. I don’t know if I will have the opportunity again but I feel so incredibly lucky to have been a part of this very special event this year and met some wonderful people.

The camaraderie, support, and shared passion for art strengthened my own artistic voice for the future and instilled a sense of belonging within a community of like-minded individuals.

We had an amazing amount of visitors over the week, some travelling many miles for what was most likely the largest art exhibition for a long time in Stony! Many of these visitors contributed to our refreshments fundraiser where donations were headed to Willen Hospice. Many visitors also bought from us, whether it was a single card or an artwork for their home or garden, most of all I met other members of my “tribe” .

Thank you to all that took part and that visited, and that made this such a wonderful experience. Thank you especially to the Visual Artists Group who work so hard putting together this county wide showcase !

Please, if you have read this far take a look at the work of the other artists and follow our Stony Stratford Artists Group on Facebook. There is a plan a foot for something else….

Me in a summer top sitting at a table in front of Bodleys, a large old building housing student accomodation and many windows. It is a sandstone coloured building and a lawned area.
Me sketching by the student accomodation

A wonderful post Art weeks bit of me time with my daughter at Cambridge before her concert at Kings Chapel. To have interrupted sketching time was just what I needed.


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