Celebrating Yorkshire art in aid of Saint Michael’s

15 May 2014

Fine art met fine wine in an exhibition held on Thursday 1st May, raising over £1,200 for Saint Michael’s. The ‘Impressions of Yorkshire’ event was held at the charity’s iconic Hornbeam Park-based Hospice, bringing together traditional and contemporary art from across the region.

Event organisers, the Knaresborough Fundraising Group, were inspired to put on an exhibition celebrating Yorkshire art after local hobby artist, Ray Sturgess, gifted several of his paintings to the Hospice to help raise valuable funds.
Each year Saint Michael’s provides care and support for more than 2000 people living with terminal illness and bereavement in the Harrogate District. All of the charity’s services are free of charge, and rely upon the incredible support of local people like Ray.

It costs £4.4m every year for Saint Michael’s to continue its vital work, both at the hospice and through the Just ‘B’ bereavement service, as well as out in the community.

The charity is currently expanding its services to meet the growing needs of the population, reaching out to local communities through initiatives such as Saint Michael’s@Starbeck.

This key development provides the community of Starbeck with a hub of specialist support and advice, which will work hand in hand with the Saint Michael’s Macmillan Nurses who facilitate the delivery of care in patients’ own homes.

Ray’s works, which include a selection of local landscapes in pastels, were exhibited alongside pieces by other prominent Yorkshire artists, including etchings from Piers Browne and Mary Farnell, paintings by Daphne Chandler, Sheryl Roberts and Alan Lyman, prints by Jacquie Denby, photography from Joe Cornish and Lucinda Buscall, as well as pottery by Andrew Hague.

Guests savoured the artworks with tipples provided by Harrogate-based wine and beer specialists Ake and Humphris, and had their wits tested with a ‘Call My Bluff’ style wine tasting. Local restaurant, Al Bivio, and food shop, Cook, generously donated a selection of tasty canapés.

Nicola Buscall, owner of Buscall Gallery and member of the fundraising group, who put together the exhibition said: “On hearing about the event, I received offers from other artists I work with to enter their pieces of their work into the show and ‘Impressions of Yorkshire’ was born.” These offers included the very generous donation of an oil painting by Sheryl Roberts which sold on the night.
Sadly Ray Sturgess, who had been unwell for some time, died shortly before the event. Several of his pieces were sold on the night and a selection of his work is currently on display at the Hospice for visitors to Crimple House to appreciate and enjoy.

Nicola Buscall added: We hope to have done justice to Ray’s work tonight. It has been much admired by all our guests and it is fitting that the exhibition was of landscapes, one of Ray’s favourite subjects to paint.

Main photograph: Picture L_R Nicola Buscall, Knaresborough Fundraising Group, Christine Norton, Fundraising Manager, Saint Michael’s Hospice, Anna Woollven, Knaresborough Fundraising Group and Tara Stagman, Ake and Humphris

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