86. Arts Festivals in the Cotswolds

Visitors enjoying the 2014 Site Festival, a month-long contemporary arts festival held in Stroud during May. Picture © Nigel NoyesThe American-born painter John Singer Sargent, the inspiration for the Broadway Arts Festival.Each year a number of towns and larger villages in the Cotswolds host arts festivals which draw visitors from near and far and provide visitors with a huge variety of creative work to admire and enjoy.

One of the first arts festivals in the calendar is in the town of Wotton-under-Edge in the southern end of the Cotswolds. The 2015 Wotton Arts Festival, which took place in late April and early May, was the town's 45th such festival celebrating the arts in Wotton and the surrounding area, with guest appearances from further afield.

In Stroud, a month-long contemporary arts festival during the whole month of April, called the Site Festival, draws thousands of visitors to the area each year. The festival brings a full and dynamic programme of visual arts, performance, music, screenings, open studios, artist talks and workshops to the Stroud Valleys. 

Winchcombe Festival of Music & Arts is an eight-day programme packed with international artists, musicians, performers and singers. The 2015 festival, which ran from May 18-25, was Winchcombe's fifth.

Broadway Arts Festival, which takes place every other year, seeks to educate, entrance and amuse'Carnation, Lily, Lily, Rose', John Singer Sargent's most celebrated work, which is set in a garden in Broadway. all those with an interest in the Arts – not just graphic art, but also music, literature and drama.
The third such festival took place in Broadway in 2014 in the early summer and had the theme of ‘Changing Times’ to mark the centenary of the start of The Great War with distinguished speakers giving talks.

The feature art exhibition was a collection of work by the festival's inspiration, the American artist John Singer Sargent who spent a considerable time in Broadway.

The Ashmolean Museum Broadway and various galleries in the village were involved in the festival, with exhibitions of both traditional and contemporary painting. Artists also had the opportunity to join masterclasses, workshops and demonstrations. There were also five music events. 
 
The seventh Painswick Arts Festival, which has been renamed Artburst takes place from August 1-9. The festival presents a wide variety of free arts exhibitions and events.

One of the visual arts exhibitions at the 2014 Site Festival in Stroud. Picture © Nigel Noyes

More information

Broadway Arts Festival
www.broadwayartsfestival.com

Painswick Arts Festival
www.painswickartsfestival.com

Site Festival, Stroud
www.sitefestival.org.uk

Winchcombe Festival of Music and Arts
www.winchcombe.co.uk/festival

Wotton Arts Festival
www.wottonartsfestival.org.uk
 
© Loving The Cotswolds. 2017.