Aire Valley Arts was formed in March 1995 as a response to a perceived need to raise the profile of contemporary visual arts practice in the area. The first members where brought together by Daniel Paulo and Peter Marsden, two friends working in the Keighley district of West Yorkshire, close to the Aire Valley. They placed an advert in the local newspaper, asking if any local artists would like to set up a group to ease the isolation of the artist, to pool resources, to improve the status of the visual arts in our area and of course, to have fun!
It soon became obvious to the founders that there were a number of artists working outside of the touristy Dales landscape field who would benefit from a collective voice, shared ideals and resources, and the creation of opportunities not accessible to the individual, such as our 1997 Lottery-funded book, ‘The Spirit of Bradford: 18 Artists and a City’, published to tie in with the Bradford Centenary.
Originally the group began as a small venture with just 7 members and by 1997 it had grown to 18 artists.
Over the years it has staged and taken part in a large number of exhibitions, as well as providing a supportive forum for its members and it continues in this work today
Membership of the Association is by application;
Prospective new members should contact the secretary in the first instance with a sample of images of their work and/or a link to a website where it can be seen and a little bit of information about themselves and their artistic practice
If it is considered a suitable ‘fit’ with the group, the applicant would then be invited to one of the regular meetings and to bring a few examples of their work.
There is a membership subscription of £5.00 per month, payable by Direct Debit, which is used for the running expenses of the association and for fees and publicity for exhibitions etc.
We meet up in Bingley approximately every 6 weeks but our members come from a range of locations as shown on the map below.
At the meetings, there is a business session discussing plans for forthcoming exhibitions and any other matters concerning the running of the association and this is then followed by a friendly critique session when members bring along examples of their current work.
Members are able to join a Life Drawing session at the Bingley Gallery which uses a rotating selection of models. There is a small charge per session – contact Jane Fielder for more info.