Blind Veterans UK launches annual exhibition

All Hands Below Deck, Peter Appleby, Ailie MacDonald Wilson
All Hands Below Deck, Peter Appleby, Ailie MacDonald Wilson

The national military charity will exhibit and auction work created by blind veterans.

Following the theme of ‘transport’ the exhibition is set to take place on Monday (14 October).

Blind veterans in a basket making workshop, courtesy of Guy Austin

Blind veterans in a basket making workshop, courtesy of Guy Austin

Pieces by staff and volunteers will also be displayed and will be available to view until November 1 2019 at the Blind Veterans UK rehabilitation and training centre.

Louise Kirk-Partridge, rehab lead at the art & craft department at Blind Veterans UK said: “We’re absolutely delighted to be opening this year’s Art Exhibition at the Blind Veterans UK Brighton centre.

“We’ve been accepting entries for the past few months from our blind veterans, as well as the charity’s staff and volunteers, and we can’t wait to share the results of their work.

“Having the chance to pursue the creative arts is a fantastic way for our veterans to regain confidence after sight loss.

“This exhibition is a real opportunity to showcase that there really is no barrier for enjoyment of art, while raising much-needed funds for the charity.”

The unique pieces of artwork, specially created for the exhibition, will be entered into an online auction and open to bids until noon on Friday 1 November.

The online catalogue will be published on the date of the exhibition launch on Monday 14 October here

Since it first started its work with soldiers returning from World War One in 1915, the role of art and craft has been integral to rehabilitation at Blind Veterans UK.

From craft skills such as basket-making, woodturning and frame-making in the charity’s early days, to today’s activities of painting, photography, sculpture, and mosaic, blind veterans are able to build their sense of independence and develop their creativity.

The historical focus of such training was vocational, but now blind veterans are supported in the Blind Veterans UK specialist Art & Craft Workshop to explore the recreational benefits of the arts.

Whether it’s helping to rediscover a skill someone thinks that they may have lost, or encouraging veterans to try something they’ve never tried before, confidence gained in workshops often helps in overcoming many of the barriers and challenges of sight loss.

The exhibition will take place on Monday 14 October, 2-3pm at Blind Veterans UK Brighton Centre, Greenways, Ovingdean, BN2 7BS.