Sidmouth to showcase Academicians Exhibition

HAVING earned a reputation as being a showcase for both professional and amateur artists, Kennaway House has been chosen to host Sidmouth s Academicians Exhibition later this month.

HAVING earned a reputation as being a showcase for both professional and amateur artists, Kennaway House has been chosen to host Sidmouth's Academicians Exhibition later this month.

"We are absolutely delighted that the South West Academy of Fine and Applied Arts has chosen to come to Kennaway House for this prestigious exhibition for the first time," said Liz Halls, manager of the Regency former home of Sidmouth's first MP, Sir John Kennaway, which re-opened last summer following a �1 million restoration programme.

"I hope it will be the start of a long association with SWA in the future."

The exciting exhibition of 50 paintings from 25 of the West Country's top artists, opens on Sunday, May 23, and runs until June 3, at the Coburg Road venue.

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The Academicians Exhibition is the annual showcase of members of the Academy.

Based in Exeter, it was founded in 2000 by a number of established artists and others with a passion for the arts, including local artists Alan Cotton from Colaton Raleigh and Michael Morgan from the Axminster area.

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It was the vision of one man, the late Brian Bearne, a long time supporter and patron of the Arts, who had a deep love of painting, the crafts, music and theatre.

The Academy, a registered charity, is run entirely by its members and other volunteers drawn from the Friends of the Academy.

Exmouth artist Ray Balkwill was elected an Academician in 2006 and is also an Academy Trustee.

He said: "One of the prime objectives was to bring together art at the highest level and represent the hundreds of talented and skilful artists who live in and work in the South West.

"Since it was conceived the Academy have achieved these goals and become a real centre of excellence for the fine and applied arts of today.

"It has mounted stunning exhibitions, given public lectures, has staged highly successful artists' postcard auctions and held widely acclaimed Young Artists Exhibitions.

"Now art lovers from all over the region and beyond, look forward to what has become definitive and certainly 'not to be missed' dates for their calendar."

The Academicians Exhibition will feature Cornish artists Lar Cann and Jonathan Coudrille, as well as many well-known Devon painters including Alan Cotton and Michael Morgan.

The exhibition opens every day, including Sundays, from 10am to 5pm.

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