South Yorkshire artist Bob triumphs over disability with exhibition

Artist Bob Langsford and his team of helpers
Artist Bob Langsford and his team of helpers

AN EXHIBITION at Heeley City Farm celebrates the work of artist Bob Langford, who paints using a brush attached to a helmet to overcome his cerebral palsy.

Bob, aged 57, is determined that his disability does not restrict his creative talent.

He paints using the painstaking technique, which requires strong neck muscles and intense concentration.

A selection of his oil paintings, based on local landscapes, is on display at Heeley City Farm until June 30.

Bob, who visits the farm on a regular basis with his support worker Charlotte Nutting, is a first-time exhibitor and approached managers after seeing other work displayed in the cafe.

He is “very proud” to see his own work on show.

“I like painting, it is a good way to spend a day,” he said. “I cannot use my hands due to cerebral palsy, so I have to use a helmet with a paint brush attached. It can take me a week to finish just one painting.”

The 15 oil paintings in the exhibition were created using postcards or pictures as inspiration.

Bob, who lives in Chesterfield and took art classes in Buxton, usually sketches his creations before using paint.

Charlotte, Bob’s support worker at a friendship group run by Enable Care and Home Support in Chesterfield, said: “What Bob does is very difficult.

“I’ve been honoured to see the commitment and the skill he puts into his work.”

The paintings can also be bought from the farm kitchen, with prices from £10 to £30. Proceeds go to the farm, Enable, and towards more materials.

Sarah Hardy, from Heeley City Farm, said: “We are really glad to be able to exhibit Bob’s work in the farm kitchen.

“It’s important to support and encourage creativity and it’s exciting for the artist when a member of the public loves something they’ve created enough to buy it.

“Bob has already sold one of his paintings and donated some of the purchase price to the farm.

“I’ve got my eye on one myself!”

The farm kitchen is open daily from 10am to 4pm.