The Courthouse is just one venue in Otley where you can view Art exhibitions.
Download the Otley Art Map here.
Our exhibitions change every month:
Painter Diana Henderson is an example to us all.
Housebound due to the effects of Parkinson’s Disease, with which she was diagnosed 20 years ago, the 78-year-old artist gets up early every morning to do what she loves – paint.
“I never knew I would get a condition,” she says. “If I had known, I would have done so much more.”
Despite being in almost constant pain and unable to do much for herself, Diana continues to produce large paintings in acrylic, a selection of which will be displayed at an exhibition at Otley Courthouse next month.
Also on display will be some of her fabulously individual books which contain collage, poetry, sketches and more, many dating back to the 1950s when she lived in London.
She first noticed something was wrong with her hands while swimming. “I didn’t shake; when I was first diagnosed my hands were like claws, I couldn’t write my name let alone anything else. I was determined to resolve it and didn’t take medication for 10 years. There is no pattern to it; I get a lot of pain but you just deal with it.”
Diana (pronounced Deeana from her Italian background) dealt with the effects by painting and writing. “I found a way of unclawing my hands. The disease opened my eyes, and unlocked my imagination. I didn’t know I was going to get a condition, you never know, so we must do as much as we can while we can.”
Diana, who lives in Otley, started off as an abstract painter 1980s and achieved a BA in fine art at Hull, followed by an MA Leeds. “I had always wanted to paint, from being a child, but opportunities don’t always come your way.
“My father took me to see the Last Supper in Milan. I was 10 years old, determined to be a painter, until I saw his work. He was a genius, I was ordinary. I needed to know.
“Colour dominated my passion. The desire to explore and express my feelings about the ordinary, only to discover that nothing was ordinary.”
Her books veer towards autobiography, the pages filled with poetry, sketches and collage. One book is filled with notes and hand-drawn pictures from her days as a professional actress in repertory theatre; after training at the now long-gone Northern Theatre School in Bradford, she trod the boards in plays such as The Deep Blue Sea by Terrence Rattigan.
“I never thought I could do anything, I lacked confidence, but when I read my old stuff I just think of how I could have done so much better. It takes time to get rid of the education and just become you. And now – well, I just love doing what I do.”
Without Limits opens at the Otley Courthouse on April 6 and runs until April 26. There will also be an opportunity to ‘meet the artist’ on Saturday April 12 1.30-3.30.
Courthouse Volunteers Exhibition
Retrospective of previous exhibitors
Otley Arts Club
In House Arts
We are a group of volunteers who curate and publicise exhibitions at the Otley Courthouse.
If you would like to submit your work for consideration for a future exhibition, please email In-House Arts at firstname.lastname@example.org or call into Otley Courthouse to pick up an exhibition pack.
The cabinets in the foyer are available throughout the year for displaying arts and crafts.
For more information contact Lorain at email@example.com or call 07828 141718.