Hampstead Summer Festival 2022 in the garden of Keats House

06:45 9 June 2022

Keats Grove will be covered in canvas murals created by schoolchildren and local artists for this year’s Hampstead Summer Festival.

Now in its 12th year, the 2022 celebration takes place over three weekends in the beautiful setting of Keats House and includes the Murals Festival, Art Fair, Outdoor Shakespeare and Family Garden Party.

Most events are free and co-hosted by the Hampstead School of Art (HSoA) and the volunteer-run Keats Community Library.

HSoA Director Isabel Langtry said: “We held a scaled-down festival last year in the garden of Keats House – it’s such a beautiful, inspiring space that felt very safe and is in a very accessible position. , so it made sense to hold it there again.”

Craft activities at last year’s garden party
– Credit: Courtesy of Hampstead Summer Festival

Events begin on June 19 with the annual Picture The Heath competition which asks budding artists to celebrate the moor and its surroundings with works of art preferably created on the day. Up to £500 in prizes are up for grabs with finished works on display at the art fair on July 3.

On June 25, the Keats Grove Community Mural Festival will see large canvas paintings hung along the route celebrating the poet John Keats who lived in what was then Wentworth Place. Local choirs, a dance school and a group of cheerleaders will perform during the unveiling of the paintings.

Langtry said they send canvases of around 1.5 x 2 meters to local school children, artists and “anyone who wants to make one”.

“They are based on Keats, his poems, the garden, the museum and the artifacts. A whole range of ideas come up, many – like Keats’ poems – are inspired by nature, including birds and the garden itself. same.

“All the neighbors have given permission to attach the canvases to the doors and walls – even the church has donated its railings. We want to fill all of Keats Grove and make a beautiful, colorful event for Camden.”

Els Bauer, one of the festival’s founders, said they will remain standing for two weeks for passers-by to enjoy: “Art has always been at the heart of the festival and we really want to bring it into the streets of Hampstead. The response from the people of Keats Grove was charming. We want everyone to walk around there to see it!

Keats House garden party birds of prey

The family garden party in the garden of Keats House will include a birds of prey demonstration, craft activities and a mini film school
– Credit: Courtesy of Hampstead Summer Festival

On June 26, from 2-5 p.m., the Keats Community Library is hosting a free family garden party with storytelling, mini film school, arts activities, a birds of prey demonstration, and delicious refreshments.

On July 2, there are two family performances of Drama Impact’s The Taming of the Shrew, performing their edited and interactive version of Shakespeare’s combative love story with nine actors in Elizabethan dress on the Keats House lawn.

The festival ends with the art fair showing the winners of Picture The Heath and an open exhibition of local artists.

Langtry says: “People can meet us in the garden on June 19, we’ll give them a map and they can wander freely around the moor and the village and be inspired by what they see – whether it’s a drawing, a painting or photograph. They bring it on the day of the art fair and we’ll hang the work. There will be something for everyone, art marquees, free family printmaking and painting workshops, and craftsmen selling their work. It will be a great occasion to bring everyone together after two difficult years.”

Proceeds will benefit KCL and HSoA “two charities that have such an impact in the region”, including keeping the library open and funding scholarships at the art school.

For Taming of the Shrew tickets and Picture The Heath entry go to www.eventbrite.co.uk Festival details at www.hampsteadsummerfestival.com/

About Frances White

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