A POPULAR art group which doubled its sessions during lockdown has launched an exhibition of work completed at the height of the pandemic in Britain.
The Luton Irish Forum Art Group, which was founded three years ago by volunteer art tutor Keith Whitwell, is so important to its members that when lockdown hit the group decided to continue their Friday sessions via Facebook and Zoom
Members enjoyed their online tutorials so much that an additional lesson was added on Tuesdays.
Mr Whitwell, who was Highly Commended in the individual category for Bedfordshire South at the High Sheriff Awards 2020 for his commitment to the group, said of its move online: “It has been a challenge arranging and running demonstrations, setting challenges and mentoring but everyone seems to have really enjoyed it – so much so we now have another online group on Tuesdays as well.”
He added: “I am so proud of the work the members have created during the Coronavirus pandemic.
“Everyone has stayed engaged and creative and produced some terrific work. This exhibition is a demonstration of the joy and creativity we have found with each other in the group.”
Group regular Joanne Close claims the group is a vital part of her life.
“Over two years ago now I entered Keith’s art group as he was taking a class,” she explained.
“Today I could not live without my art sessions. I have been so inspired by our wonderful art teacher and the other artists.”
Sam Baldock, who joined the group a year and a half ago, said: “I have learnt so much, met some lovely people, and enjoyed every minute.
"Lockdown has been more bearable with these sessions to look forward to. Keith has been working hard, doing tutorials and encouraging us.”
To view the LIF Art in Lockdown exhibition click here.
For more details about the Luton Irish Forum click here or call 01582 720 447.