As the end of the year approaches, it's a natural time to review how our first year panned out. Well, we have to say it wasn't what we expected!
Being forced to close three weeks after opening wasn't an action anyone could have predicted. Completely necessary for the health of the country it hurt in more ways than one. A new business with very little paperwork of income, we didn't qualify for any of the government help and had to rely on our fantastic resident artists for financial support.
However, the most frustrating aspect of the lockdown was the change to our schedule of exhibitions, courses and workshops. Thankfully our website was adaptable enough to host virtual exhibitions, so our second exhibition on April 16th went ahead virtually. It wasn't how we envisaged the gallery operating and local artist Ella Carty very kindly organised a virtual private view to introduce her work.
Exhilaration pushed away our disappointment when in May we received news that we could reopen for 'Memories of the Sea - Jon White's Exhibition in June. Eager to be out and about again, our visitor numbers were high, and Jon achieved some great sales. At last, we had a glimpse of our dream - shining a spotlight on some of the fantastic artists we had met since moving back to Cornwall.
Adrian Holmes' fantastic woodblock print exhibition followed in July. Nicola Moseley exhibited her cool, calm local landscapes in August. And Corinne Detain brought an amazing collection of subtle mixed media abstracts to the gallery in September. In this mid-year period, we also seized the chance to open our resident's studios to the public for the postponed Open Studios Cornwall event. Dave Pentin showed his latest collection in dedicated space on the first floor for the event, while resident artists Lee and Derek chatted about their work with all our visitors.
Life seemed to be returning to normal. We managed to run the last two of our postponed mixed media illustration workshops with Eve Bouratt in September and Steve Buckler was ready to run his series of Drawing classes in November. The future was looking positive and we started planning a series of free talks by local writers in our event space.
Andrew Barrowman opened his exhibition in October with a great response to his local scenes. However, rising infection numbers closed the gallery a few weeks later in November, cutting short Andrew's show and delaying the start of Ashley Hanson's exhibition of vibrant abstracts until December.
The perfect panacea for the disruption Ashley work brightened the gallery as Christmas approached. The mood was festive, and we expanded our offering to include books by local authors, which proved a great success. And we celebrated all the fantastic work on show throughout the year in our final year catalogue.
Despite not being a typical trading year, we have thoroughly enjoyed being gallery owners in 2020. Not only have we had the privilege of being surrounded by fantastic artwork and have met many inspiring people. We have also managed to spotlight the work of ten talented local artists, which was our ambition.
We can't wait to see where 2021 takes us...JOIN US on our journey