dance, painting, photography, drawing, trails, drama, illustration, music, talks, walks, performance art, printmaking, textiles, fashion, design, animation and workshops

Reading’s three-day festival showcasing our arts, heritage, culture and creative industries.

“We are delighted to be bringing back Open for Art for the third year, a celebration of arts, culture and Open for Art 2016; Reading; jellyheritage, curated and run by jelly volunteers” says Suzanne Stallard, director of jelly. “This is a special year, celebrating Reading’s Year of Culture 2016 and there are a number of new events and partners including ROOM, an arts project working with 7 artists, 180 schoolchildren and resulting in an installation based project”

Open for Art 2016 includes new talks and walks, a RAVE for the under 10s plus a chance to sign up your commitment to the Arts in Reading on the pledge wall
which will give you a chance to find out more about the arts, culture and heritage and how to get involved.

This year the team of Arts Ambassadors are being supported by Reading’s Business Improvement Open for Art; Reading; jellyDistrict and you will be able to find them throughout the weekend, identifiable by their t-shirts and giant lollipops, they will be on hand to tell you where to find things and you can pick up a map to follow trails.

Bobby Lonergan, Reading Business Improvement District Manager, said: “We are delighted Open for
Art is returning to the town centre again as part of Reading Year of Culture, showcasing the amazing creativity that exists in Reading. Throughout Reading 2016, Reading Business Improvement District has been encouraging Reading’s cultural community to make creative use of the great public space in the town centre. Open for Art 2016 promises to build on the success of previous years to attract more people into the heart of the town and help arts and culture in Reading get stronger year on year.”

Zsuzsi Lindsay, Producer Reading 2016, said: “July’s theme for Reading Year of Culture is Art in Unusual Places. In previous years, Open for Art has seized the mantle of taking art to the people and it is hugely exciting to see such an ambitious programme as part of Reading 2016.”

Launching on Friday 1st July, starting with “Breakfast with an Artist” in pentahotel at 8am, all areOpen for Art 2016; Reading; jelly welcome to hear the story around an art collection with a strong link to the town and pick up maps for the whole weekend

Alexandra Vintage and Electric Hair Reading are hosts to an evening of vintage glamour with vintage fashion, hairstyling and makeup demos, free one to one stylings, complimentary fizz, discounts and cake. Guests will be treated to a special live performance by singer songwriter ‘EverHazel’ and will receive free goodies to take home, followed by an evening, inspired by the classic play and film “Abigail’s Party’ devised by Mike Leigh, at Milk with specially created cocktails and tunes.

New for 2016, Creative People and jelly, will be running a session of making for all ages on Saturday 2

Open for Art, jelly
Open for Art 2016

July. Instruments will be made, banners will be created, dance moves practised and the music samples created will then be turned into pieces to be played during our afternoon RAVE for the under 10s at RYND

Throughout the weekend we will be hearing peoples’ stories and experiences through a number of talks and walks, culminating on Sunday 3 July with a talk by Rachel Atkinson on sustainability in her talk “From Flock to Fabric”.

Open for Art 2016 will include the return of the Open Air Art challenge where artists can create a piece of artwork inspired by Reading and the public vote to choose the winner of £100 prize, workshops, drawing walks and talks, an artists trail across spaces in the town centre, The Annual Daydream Harvest and a newly created performance piece by Berzerk Productions.

A full programme of events across the weekend and the venues involved will be released soon, but for more information please visit

Workshops and events bookable here:

Printed maps available from 29 June, or downloadable here.

The Open for Art Weekend Festival is curated by Jelly


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