A showcase of local and professional art in one Great event

Great Sheffield Art Show artist Anne Smith  with her painting, The Tide's Out
Great Sheffield Art Show artist Anne Smith with her painting, The Tide's Out

One of the major events on the city’s cultural calendar, the Great Sheffield Art Show. takes place this weekend.

The exhibition at the Octagon hosts an array of more than 2000 exhibits, including oil, watercolour, acrylic, pencil, pastel, digital and 3D pieces.

Great Sheffield Art Show artist Heather Speed, aged 9,   with her painting, Fishing Village

Great Sheffield Art Show artist Heather Speed, aged 9, with her painting, Fishing Village

The centrepiece is a large gallery showing 1, 400 exhibits submitted by local and regional artists who show and/or sell their art work.

In addition 30 professional artist and trade stands), workshops and other activities to make a great day out for art lovers of all ages for those who wish to view and/or buy artwork.

Representing two ends of the age spectrum of exhibitors are Anne Smith and Heather Speed .

Anne, who is showing The Tide’s Out, only took up painting when she retired. “ I never did any recreational art work until I retired and then I enrolled in an art foundation course with adult education,” she says. “I now attend an art class each week with Isabel Blincow which has gradually helped me improve.”

Heather is a nine-year-old pupil of Dobcroft Juniors proud to be the youngest contributor to GSAS. She has been painting with acrylic on canvas since she could walk and is showing a picture called Fishing Village.

There is a whole range of different styles too. “Since childhood I have been fascinated by illumination and the subtle forms and colour of Persian art,” says Jamileh Ahou who has painted Hafezian Citar Girl.

“I intend to promote this tranquil art through depicting elements from different artefacts such as tile, miniatures, and other art treasures from the past. “ She has had thre solo and 25 group exhibitions both in Sheffield and internationally.

Another experienced artist is Tony Morris-Weston who went to Leeds College of Art and Design, and Leeds University to study 3D Spatial Design.

“Although my career was outside the art world, I have always maintained an interest in drawing, mainly in pencil. More recently, after experimenting with watercolours, I switched to acrylics and found my medium.

“Last year I exhibited at GSAS for the first time, and was very pleased when one of my paintings sold. Another of my paintings won the All Scapes category in the Open Art Exhibition. This year I have submitted a diverse set of work to GSAS including Partytime which I hope will raise a smile with dog lovers!”

Others are returning to GSAS after a gap like Suzanne Mason from Stoney Middleton. “I’m a part-time graphic designer by day and have drawn and painted since I was old enough to hold a pencil or paintbrush. I am self-taught and have exhibited previously at GSAS ten years ago before I became a mum to two boys.

“I paint mainly for friends and family, mostly pet portraits and wildlife. I’ve worked in pastel pencil until recently when I took up chroma colour which is a water-based medium. It’s fantastic that my work has been selected since it’s a while since I’ve exhibited anything.”

The Great Sheffield Art Show is at the Octagon Centre, Western Bank, on Friday, 10am-8pm, Saturday and Sunday, 10am-6pm. Admission is £4.50/ £4 with accompanied under 16s free.

There is a ticket-only preview tonight, Thursday, July 4, from 7.30pm - 10pm.