PAUL STAINTON: Next week artists in Peterborough are going to be showing off their art in a cafe. Andronicas at Peterborough Garden Park will open its doors to the public to show off artwork for the very first time. Rene Viner is the curator and artist. Good morning.
RENE VINER: Good morning.
PAUL STAINTON: Now what exactly is going on then? Are people coming down there to make their art? Are they bringing down their old modelling wheels? Or are they just bringing the finished article along?
RENE VINER: Andronica’s is a really smart cafe in Peterborough Garden Park, and when I saw it first going up I thought, oh my goodness, this is the most perfect venue to show off art. And since July 2010 we’ve been showcasing local artists at the venue, and we’re launching our brand new exhibition this Saturday, from two until four. You’ll be able to meet the artists. They’ll be there to chat with you about their work, and you can join them for a glass of wine. We’ve called this exhibition Elemental, because the inspiration has been derived from the elements, basically, the land, sea and sky. And it’s a vibrant interesting exhibition which hopefully the public will enjoy.
PAUL STAINTON: There is a lack of venues in the city to showcase art. I can’t think of anywhere really.
RENE VINER: It’s quite frustrating. The official one is the Museum and Art gallery, which is currently closed for refurbishment.
PAUL STAINTON: But even then it’s not something, with the greatest respect to the Museum and we love the place, it’s not somewhere you fall over in the middle of town.
RENE VINER: Well no, it’s not on the high street. We do have a groundswell of art movement going on in Peterborough, believe it or not. Currently there’s a number of people like myself who are trying to make it happen. Harriets in the centre of town has got a gallery space, and that’s quite interesting. It’s a very different space to Andronicas. Andronicas is, rather than a traditional Peterborough building, it’s quite a London like building. I always feel it’s my piece of London here in Peterborough. It’s quite sophisticated. It serves gourmet coffee, and now also displaying local talented artists.
PAUL STAINTON: Do you feel more could be done in Peterborough though? You’re doing your bit. What should be done?
RENE VINER: Well I think a cooperation between commercial business and artist is quite an interesting avenue to explore. Commercially artists would probably struggle on the high street, because in Peterborough it’s probably not going to survive selling art at the prices that we would sell them at. But if we could link up with other businesses, where we are able to show work on their walls, we provide an increase in footfall, because the artists on display will tell their friends, their friends will come and see their art, so for the business it brings more customers. And also it allows them to have a fresh new look from time to time, an excuse to do some PR, and go on the radio like this, and go in the papers. So it’s quite a good win-win situation.
PAUL STAINTON: So Rene, when can people come and see the art then? You’re in the coffees shop in Andronicas.
RENE VINER: Well, this Saturday, from two to four, you can meet us all, the artists, face to face. The exhibition goes on until 20th September, and then there’ll be a new one after that. So from now until 20th September, pop down there, go and have a gourmet cup of coffee, or some high tea, because they’re doing a very good high tea, and take in some art.
Andronicas Art Gallery and Cafe