Now come on down 'C it's open all ours! 

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13 July 2006

ARTISTS will be opening their studios to the public at the weekend.

Each year Cambridge Open Studios gives people a chance to visit artists, browse their work, and exchange ideas and views.

About 300 artists in Cambridgeshire will be displaying a range of work, including paintings, ceramics, prints, hand-made jewellery, drawings, textiles, sculpture, and mixed media.

Jane Hollidge of Barrington is a self-taught potter and a painter, and will be holding her exhibition this weekend and next weekend (July 22-23) at her German Huf Haus - 30 Ivy House, Foxton Road - which was seen on Channel 4's Grand Designs programme.

She said: "My family was always rich in artistic value and created things out of nothing."

Jane draws on a range of themes for her work. She enjoys painting abstract pieces and minimalistic landscapes.

"Me and my husband Peter like nature and going on walking holidays, and images just stick in my mind," she said.

Jane and Peter lived in the Far East for several years and this gave her a range of artistic influences, but she also said her favourite artists - Peter Hayes, Robin Welch, and Tjok Dessauvage, gave her encouragement as a new artist.

Jane also produces slab work and pots. She keeps the pots simple and paints them free-hand, so every image is always unique.

She said she enjoyed taking part in the Open Studios, because it enabled her to meet new people and talk to them about her work.

"Normally most of my work goes to clients I never meet so I don't get any feedback," she said.

Francesca Biggar of Shepreth is a jeweller and will be holding her exhibition at the weekend at 75 Frog End.

Her fascination with jewellery was inspired by her childhood memories in the Middle East.

Her designs range from classic to modern, with 18ct gold and platinum being a common theme.

It is the third time Francesca has taken part in the Cambridge Open Studios.

She said: "I really enjoy taking part because most of the year I work to commission and deal with people on a one-to-one basis. But at this exhibition I meet people who give me new ideas and feedback and I enjoy the social interaction."

Francesca is a prize-winning graduate of the Sir John Cass School of Art and Design and has been making jewellery for about four years after changing careers in 2000.

Joyce Seddon of Barrington has been an oil painter for the past 30 years, and will be displaying her work at the weekend at 61 High Street.

Joyce is self-taught painter who paints traditional small still life works. She has been so successful that her work has been recognised by the Royal Academy.

She said: "It started off as a hobby, but over the years it's become much more professional."

Joyce's husband Geoff, will be exhibiting his jewellery and stained glass work.

Anthony Hopkinson of Melbourn is a print-maker and will be holding his exhibition this weekend and next weekend at Melbourn Bury, Royston Road.

He has been producing limited edition prints for the past eight years.

Anthony produces prints of architecture and animals. Some of his animals are in human situations, including a pig driving a sports car which is called Road Hog.

He said: "I was sitting in a traffic jam and someone over-took me on the wrong side. I often come up with ideas for prints when I'm waiting in traffic because I have time to think."

Anthony describes some of his prints as bring quite comical.

"They are also fairly simple, but I like to use bold and simple colours."

Frances Colquhoun, will also be displaying some of her oil and water-colour work at Melbourn Bury.

Lizanne van Essen of Meldreth, who is a book artist and painter, will be holding her exhibition at 6 Fenny Lane this weekend, and on July 22-23.

Lizanne produces modern pop-up books in the form of a sculpture.

"When I was at art school I did print making and wanted to make them 3D," she said.

In between producing the books, she also produces traditional paintings.

This is the 10th year Lizanne has taken part in the Open Studios event.

Mother and daughter Hilary and Safi Butler, of Foxton, are varied media artists, and will be holding their exhibtions at 79 High Street at the weekend.

Safi, who has a degree in fine art sculpture, specialises in mono prints and fused glass.

She said: "My inspiration comes from nature and children's illustrations which are fun and quirky."

Hilary produces sculptures made of sea glass, wire, driftwood, and fused glass.

"My work is influenced by the sea. I spend a lot of my time beachcombing," Hilary said.

There are no entrance fees and visitors are not expected to buy work.

For more details visit the website:

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