First two weekends in May

2020 Art Trail Dates

May 2nd, 3rd and May 8th, 9th, 10th 2020, 10.30am - 5.00pm each day

Photography by Ellen Hancock
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Find inspiration in West Sussex

Chichester Open Studios Art Trail

In May 2019, 160 artists from Chichester and its surrounding areas welcomed thousands of visitors to the annual Open Studios Art Trail. You can keep in touch with us and see our artists' work here on the website...and we look forward to meeting you on the 2020 Trail!

If you are an artist who would like to take part in the 2020 Trail, have a look under 'Join Us' and contact us if you would like some more information.  

What is the Art Trail?

City, Downs, Harbour, Peninsula and Regis Trails. Explore one Trail at a time, or hop around the Venues as you choose; we offer you the chance to enjoy the art and hospitality of our talented local artists for 5 days in May.

  • For the visitor, the Art Trail gives the annual occasion to plan days out to see all kinds of art in the making, talk to admired artists and to view and purchase original artwork.
  • For the artist, it is a well established framework of organisation and publicity that promotes and supports those who live and work in Chichester and surrounding areas. The Art Trail is an unparalleled opportunity to present work to an enthusiastic public in the inspiring context of the creative environment.
Browse Trail venues

Planning your own Trail

To help keep you informed about the artists exhibiting their work, and the locations of their studios, there are a number of resources available.

  • The Trail Guide which you can pick up from the Oxmarket, the Novium, Chichester Library or in many other locations in Chichester from the end of March onwards. Its maps show Venue locations, giving you directions, so you can chose which artists to visit and plan your route. Each artist has a profile in the Guide, with an image and a brief description of the artwork you will find at the Venue.
  • The Digital Trail Guide You can also download this below.

At the back you have a foldout map of the whole Trail, with a list of Artists by Venue. If you wish to visit specific artists, you can look them up in the Alphabetical List of Artists at the front. Or, if you prefer particular sorts of art, there is an index of Artists by Category.

  • Oxmarket Preview Exhibition. If you are quick off the mark, you will be in time to visit this exhibition which runs during the third week in April. Each artist has a piece of work in the show; a taster to help you chose which Venues and artists to visit.
  • Do some research here on the website. Every artist has a web page with examples of their work and an insight into their background and inspiration. Artists are listed alphabetically or by sector, and Venues are grouped according to category of work. You will find information about Chichester Open Studios Art Trail as a whole, adding a wider perspective to the art and practice of its participants.

Making art accessible to all

We hope you thoroughly enjoy your days out and about on the Art Trail. Once you reach the general location of a Venue, you should easily be able to spot the bright green Chichester Art Trail signs to welcome you.

If there is not time to visit all your chosen artists, hold on to your Trail Guide for reference and feel free to contact artists at a later date. The website is also busy all year round, so you will always find information about our artists here.

To be invited into an artist’s workplace feels a rare treat; an enriching experience that adds meaning and accessibility to the work. The Art Trail is an essential event in the year for me, providing a focus to work to. A format that allows local artists to meet informally with interested people, really works.

What is an Open Studio?

An Open Studios Trail is an experience in itself. It offers the exciting invitation to see artists’ work in the context of its creation.

  • Art is the focus here; the walls and surfaces are buzzing with the creative dialogue that connects tools, materials and the details of making.
  • Visitors love to gain an insight into an artist’s working practice, adding the associations that bring the work to life.
  • With work as varied and individual as each creator, there will be something to suit every taste and you will have opportunity to acquire original works of art.
  • There may be demonstrations, a chance to have a go yourself or information about artists’ events or courses.
  • Some Venues offer a cuppa and cake to add to the enjoyment of your experience.
  • You’ll be sure to find inspiration or even the nudge that starts you on your own creative adventures!

Everyone is welcome and admission to all Venues is free.

View Trail Artists
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