Town’s artists have new space to exhibit

U choose smoothie bar Ilkeston. Melanie Allen Mural painting.
U choose smoothie bar Ilkeston. Melanie Allen Mural painting.

Ilkeston talent will now have a home on Bath Street as a new art gallery opens to display their work.

The Smoothie Art Gallery above U Choose Smoothie Bar kicked off with an exhibition called Drawing, Fun For All The Family on Saturday last week.

U choose smoothie bar Ilkeston. Artist Tim Carke and Anthony Opiah.

U choose smoothie bar Ilkeston. Artist Tim Carke and Anthony Opiah.

Owner Paul Opiah said he wanted to create a venue for unknown artists in the town to show their work.

He added: “I think there are a lot of talented people in Ilkeston who need to come out of their shells.

“All you read in the newspaper is that it’s going downhill but Simon Cowell should come here and see what we have on offer.”

The gallery not only offers art but music too and there will be a free acoustic concert from three local singers on March 16.

The current drawing exhibition features the work of three illustrators who will be on site with their art on sale.

Alan Clarke, freelance art director and show organiser at the Smoothie said: “There are themes and activities for children who get inspired by the work on display when they visit.

“The idea behind the gallery is to give a platform for local artists who may not be able to show their work in a museum.”

The Smoothie Art Gallery is open seven days a week and entry is free. There will be people on-hand to help with kids’ drawing activities at all times during this month’s exhibition.

If you are an artist looking to exhibit your work or would like to volunteer as a helper at the gallery email paulopiah@yahoo.co.uk.