Hove Arts: 51 Wilbury Road

Hove Arts: 51 Wilbury Road

Alain Guy
Alain Guy

They’ve colonised the whole of this imposing Hove town house this year. We started in the basement flat for Nick Lucas’ characterful children’s illustrations and tea and cakes on the terrace, then up to the main house. I was especially struck by two artists working on a hearty, energetic scale, here – Alain Guy’s hefty, grotesque and memorable heads of ancient-world warriors and John Beetham’s flamboyant great paintings of flowers, architecture and landscapes.

Fiveways: Nigel French and Guests

Fiveways: Nigel French and Guests

Nigel French
Nigel French

French’s photography fills this busy show; standouts are the Brighton alphabet made up of photos of letters taken from around the city, together with iconic shapes of urban landmarks. There’s an unexpected chocolate helter-skelter by Jen Lindsey-Clark to marvel at, too.

Hove Arts: Art @ the boundary

Hove Arts: Art @ the boundary

Nicholas Dunn-Coleman
Nicholas Dunn-Coleman

Evolved from last year’s Art @ All Saints, and the Sussex County Cricket Ground backdrop of the new venue suits it just fine. Persevere to find the suite round the back of the ground, and you’ll find quite a variety. Royston Hawley’s moody, threatening sea and sky oil paintings are a great foil for Polly Ballantine’s black and gold formal Oriental animal studies, and Nicholas Dunn-Coleman is showing a fascinating look at the art of the bookbinder. You can see exactly what goes on beneath the covers when a book is created by hand, and watch the process as happens. Some elegant hand-made books too, and a Victorian Bible rebound in leather for a new lease of life.

Fiveways: Anvil Ironworks

Fiveways: Anvil Ironworks

Paul Wells
Paul Wells

And finally today to this small working forge tucked behind a residential terrace. Pass if you dare the humungous metal spider creeping down the wall by the gate – a ten-foot Shelob coming to get you – and into the grassy space behind. The curly-fleeced ram, enormous crab and giant prehistoric fern fronds take you into a metal fantasy world. Watch the artist blacksmith Paul Wells at work at the forge, too.

Fiveways: Art in Nature – at 202

Fiveways: Art in Nature – at 202

Alison Ingrams
Alison Ingrams

Colour and animals everywhere here! Ten artists share the space. Chris Brooks’ animal sculptures start with the inspiration of the natural driftwood shape, which is then evolved with metal embellishments – the otter and ostrich figures stand out. Then to the garden to enjoy his metal water sculptures. Metal and wood are matched harmoniously with paintings; I noted Alison Ingrams’ Art Deco “Skomer Puffins” especially.

Fiveways: 47 Southdown Avenue

Fiveways: 47 Southdown Avenue

Jane Jordan
Jane Jordan

Home to artists and collectors. The brochure image says it all – I enjoyed Steve Jordan’s dynamic, energetic film still / snapshot-style paintings, always paired with Jane Jordan’s re-imagined, patterned revived furniture, each unique – especially the “Ferns in Red” chest, washed with shadowy leafy burgundy shapes.

Independent:The Pink Bird House

Independent:The Pink Bird House

The Pink Bird House
The Pink Bird House

Through the pretty front garden, dotted with Claire Rose’s mosaics and hangings in the shady tree, to a wealth of craft, textiles and pots here, including some quirky steampunk and recycled cutlery.

Fiveways: David Williams and Guests

Fiveways: David Williams and Guests

David Williams
David Williams

Another wide selection of work here, with the painting taking centre stage, especially Williams’ hyper-realistic nature and landscape studies with the colour contrast turned right up. Loved his “Coastguard Cottage Garden” and Sally Grimshaw’s “Seven Sisters”. Then through the lush little garden to visit the artist’s studio.