With Britain in lockdown during November 2020, the NBA trail was slightly different this year. Laurel Smart talks us through some of the highlights.

The 2020 North Bristol Art Trail was like no other. We planned and we hoped, and we hoped and we planned. We prepared for the usual walking trail but it was not to be. The signs went up in venue gardens and those of us who could, put on a display in our windows and in some cases in front gardens.

New member, Lee Cox, put on a display in her front garden. She wasn’t expecting the attention she received for her beautiful ceramics and counts her first trail a huge success. Jane Boot showed her work in her windows and as the weekend proved popular with passersby she created an impromptu gallery in her porch. 

Jane Boot’s Porch Gallery

Nick Germolemou enjoyed taking a new approach to showing his work in partial lockdown. He filled his windows with his bright acrylic paintings and cards, being close to the pavement he attracted lots of attention. Paul Davis created a self-service pop-up charity collection, selling framed postcards and loose prints, donating £125 to the North Bristol Food Bank.  Laurel Smart created an informal outdoor exhibition of her large abstract canvases, She showed 21 pieces, spilling onto the pavement, creating a joyous splash of colour on a grey day.

Laurel Smart’s Front Garden Gallery
Lee Cox’s Ceramic Display

However, we did much more than our scaled down walking trail. We massively scaled up our online presence. The website has always been our main portal, this year we introduced a 3D virtual gallery was very well received. The Facebook virtual trail was a huge success, attracting nearly 1000 followers. 

Paul Davis’ Pop-Up Postcard stall
Nick Germolemou’s colourful landscapes

What has 2021 got in store? It is our 20th anniversary and we are already getting excited and thinking of ways to make it special. Our greatest hope is to return to the walking trail that we love to host and the public enjoy so much. We have learned a lot about showing our work on line, now we can refine that and offer you both real and virtual experiences. 

Please keep returning to the website to see our artists’ work, to meet our new artists and to hear how we are getting on with the plans for next year.