The Walk of art ‘Walks – on’ wearing a different pair of shoes.

This year will be the 4th outing of our fantastic community festival.

The original Walk of ART came to be in 2014 after I (Lara Rule) became interested in promoting the creativity and talent in and around Horsforth. I read an artical about a local painter, Ralph Bainbridge (who is an absolute Walk of ART favourite) who was already selling his artwork from his driveway to raise money for Parkinsons. This, coupled by all the amazing people I met, as a full-time mum,  who were running small home hobbies and businesses, I decided to make links with the rest of the community and forge ahead with the idea of the Horsforth Walk of ART.

One part of the Walk of ART I have truly enjoyed, is the challenge of encouraging people who were too shy to take those first steps in getting involved. I am immensely proud when I meet people now who have since gone on to study in the arts, enrol in creative courses and even started small businesses because of the encouragement they received through the walk of art. So many people have made lifelong friends, met their neighbours and developed strong customer bases all because of this wonderful weekend.

This year, I have handed over the ‘laces’ to Kezia Roberts. I had been so nervous every time I thought about handing over the reigns. I knew that the WOA needed someone who absolutely understood why I had started it and who, I knew, would ensure it continues to be entirely community focused and completely free for all. It’s not just an art trail to me – it’s a community festival that celebrates creativity in every individual, through the mechanism of art. I’m all about people getting together and inspiring each other to ‘try’. Which is why I was thrilled when I saw one individual who always seemed to echo my thoughts exactly and I just knew that the Walk of ART would be safe under her watch.

Kezia has been involved in the work of art in various guises since its inception in 2015 but for the last 2 years had become a lot more hands on with the organisation and decision making for the event, having taken on a large role in the fundraising year of 2017. 

A word from Kezia – “Since Lara announced her stepping back, it made sense for me to step forward. I have been working as a project manager for the last 14 years on various projects from IT, People and estates changes to Scottish Devolution. Outside of my working day I am a musician in a couple of national bands ‘Vanguard’ and ‘Old Skool Anthems’.  I also sing with the 300 strong wall of sound choir ‘Inspiration’ with the Orchestra of Opera North as well as also making alternative garters for weddings!  So you can see how my love of organising, communication and engagement coupled with my passion for the arts made complete sense in why I should help to produce yet another incredible event with the community.”

This year we also welcome two new members of the team, Alison Colley (Artist Liaison) and Samira Cakali (Venue Liaison). Alison is herself a local artists, who moved to Horsforth from Nottinghamshire where she worked in outreach services delivering art to schools, traveller communities and mental health services. “I have been a full time mum for the last six years , and now that both my boys have started school I am wanting to give some time back to my love of art”.

Alison is joined by Samira, who is also a mum of 2 and a solicitor. “Every year I have said I want to get involved in the community and finally I saw the call out from the Walk of ART for help and I thought Yes! I’m going to do it. I have been looking for something for ‘me’, beyond work and kids.

Entry is open to all for the 2019 Walk of ART so get in touch if you are a local or almost local individual. We are looking for anyone who does anything creative in order to inspire and engage others. From writers, poets, signers and drummers to lighting engineers, graffiti artist, ceramic artists and oil painters, we want to celebrate creativity in all its forms.

We are also looking for venues, so if you have a shed, garage, conservatory or house that we can pair up with an artist, an unusual space for a small exhibition, or if you would like to participate by creating something special for your front garden, please get in touch.

Follow news and updates about the festival via the ‘Horsforth Walk of Art’ Facebook group or on Twitter @thewalkof_art. If you would like to get involved, please email: horsforth-woa@outlook.com

Sending creative vibes

Lara

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