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Preview: Wirral Open Studio Tour 2024

Wirral Open Studio Tour is one of the biggest open studios in the country, featuring ninety-nine artists and fifty-three studios.

Since it launched fourteen years ago, the annual event has been the best way to get a true sense of the art and the artists who make it on the Wirral.

The studios, dispersed across the Wirral peninsula in an impossible challenge to visitors, are a mix of shared artist studios, public art spaces, garages, sheds, spare rooms and shops. That eclectic mix might sound hard to track, but it’s a useful reflection of how the Wirral works. It’s a space where artists can and do make work to sell. Where their income is still significantly sales driven.

In that sense, Wirral Open Studio Tour serves as a collective, artist-driven exhibition, and each individual studio acts as a series of informal meet-the-artist events. The amalgamation of this, which has developed naturally since 2009, is really quite beautiful.

For artists, it’s a chance to share their work on their terms. For audiences its an opportunity to get to grips with what makes artists tick, and perhaps find something beautiful to take home with them along the way.

Wirral Open Studio Tour has held on to one important mantra over the years: What do artists do all day?

Simple but effective. And this year, with a wider breadth of artists, working in a more diverse set of media, there will be something new to see. If you’re based in the Wirral, go and find something new. It’ll be there. If you’re not, go and discover the Wirral’s art scene, produced and pulled together by Wirral’s artists.

Essentially, if you’re free on the 8th and 9th of June, you should be in the Wirral, visiting studios, speaking to artists and finding out, as the festival always asks, what they do all day.

Wirral Open Studio Tour is open at 99 venues on the 8th and 9th June 2024
On Friday 7th June, there is a preview event at twenty of the studios.
Find out more at www.wirralarts.com
Words, Kathryn Wainwright

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