See how the island’s creative spirit burns

Wood carver Graham Hall turning an elm bowl at his workshop at Grenaby Arts

Wood carver Graham Hall turning an elm bowl at his workshop at Grenaby Arts

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The innovative Western Open Studios Art Trail (WOSAT) opens its doors to the public over the coming May bank holiday weekend.

This year’s WOSAT (from May 3 to 5) sees many locally based artists and craftspeople open the doors of their studios to members of the public, and offers an intriguing and entertaining glimpse into the workings and the creative processes behind their individual works of art.

The events will be mainly centred around Peel, with other open events at the Isle Gallery at Tynwald Mills in St John’s, Kirk Michael and Patrick.

There will be the chance to watch wood carvers turn lumps of wood into bowls and sculptures, painters creating pieces from scratch, weavers at work and there will also be live firings of pots. All these will be complemented by children and family activities.

Also, Peel will be transformed into a colourful patchwork of rainbow woollen creations, as the latest Yarn Bomb event will hit when no-one is looking.

One place to head to is the Corrin Hall in Peel, which is new for this year. There will be a host of artists and craftspeople at work, from celebrated painters Bruno Cavellac and Juan Moore, to wood carvers, textiles artists from Sweet Ginger in Ramsey and many more. There will be opportunities to create your works of art too.

Here are some of the highlights to look forward to.

Trail guides are available – prior to the event – from the Isle Gallery; Light and Space Gallery in Castletown; Celtic Gold or House of Manannan, Peel; Sayle Gallery, Douglas; Sweet Ginger Emporium, Ramsey. Then during the weekend from: the Isle Gallery, Patrick Church, House of Manannan, Viking Longhouse, Corrin Hall and St German’s Cathedral, Peel.

Admission is £2 per person, children under-16 are free, plus the trail guide is an additional £2.

Matt Owen

Potter and clay sculptor Matt Owen will have live pot-turning demonstrations and also live Raku kiln firings in the grounds of St German’s Cathedral, Peel. This promises to be quite a spectacular sight, especially when the fired pots are brought out from the sawdust after they have cooled.

Graham Hall

Wood turner and carver Graham Hall will be at the Corrin Hall in Peel, and will be creating wooden bowls and pieces that bear relation to the work created by Matt Owen. Both artists explore similar organic themes to their work, and it will be interesting to see how the two different mediums can work together.

Nicola Dixon

The celebrated marine artist and painter, Nicola Dixon, will open the doors of her studio in Derby Road, Peel. Her bright, breezy and colourful paintings will be instantly familiar with many, and this is an opportunity to see how a painter captures her surroundings and turns them into creative works of art.

Yarn Bomb

For those of you who thought that knitting was restricted to bobble hats and ill-fitting cardigans will be forced to think again. Many of the island’s knitters have been hard at work since the start of the year, and their results will be scattered all over Peel throughout the weekend. Keep a close eye on the harbourside for anything slightly alien!

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