Sharp wake up call to the desperate need to save Watts Gallery now or never
Returning to a snow covered Gallery on 5 January with a burst water pipe and freezing temperatures was a sharp wake up call to the desperate need to save Watts Gallery now or never. Although I can watch developments at the Gallery from Mary Watts’s former ceramic workshop across the road in the warmth, there are plenty of reasons for visiting the bereft, cold Gallery.
Today I met a representative from an international company which might generously support our lighting scheme for the Gallery. We also had a visit from an artist, specialising in traditional skills of drawing and painting, who might lead a workshop here in the summer.
Our challenges for 2009 are to keep our generous donors, pledgers and patrons on board to complete the restoration of Watts Gallery, to explore the possibility of securing Watts’s Great Studio as a centre for exploring Victorian art, social history and craft, and to prepare for the re-opening of the Gallery in 2010. During the year, our priority must be to maintain the magnificent support that the Gallery has achieved through a variety of tempting events including our exhibitions at the Guildhall Art Gallery and St Paul’s, our Watts lecture on 25 February, the Watts Symposium on 26,27 February and the many other events that are on offer to our supporters and Friends. I look forward to seeing many of you over the forthcoming weeks and months. Thank you for your continuing interest and support.