2020 brought about not only the coronavirus but the 100th birthday of the Buckinghamshire Art Society.
In 1920 Buckinghamshire Art Society was founded by a group of Bucks painters and sculptors to provide a forum for organising exhibitions for members. It gave the chance for professional artists chance to sell art to the public without a London showroom commission added on. The first exhibitions took place in the old Market Hall in Amersham. In 1977 more space was needed and so exhibitions were moved to the Fitzwilliams Centre in Beaconsfield. It has been a regular exhibition space and we still exhibit there every spring.
Back in1998, the then chairman Brian Whybrow said, “The exhibition was initially set up to promote art throughout Buckinghamshire. Most of the paintings sold were in single figures. In the 1950’s paintings by professional artists of the Society were fetching around 3 guineas. These days, paintings sell for up to £2000.” However, at the present time artworks at the exhibitions are much more affordable with most works well below that price tag.
BAS plays an active role in the visual arts in Buckinghamshire, organising exhibitions, demonstrations, workshops and various social events, the majority of which are open to the public. The society maintains close links with the County Museum in Aylesbury. We also maintain a website with information about our exhibitions and other activities as well as information about each member and photos of their work.
The objective of the Buckinghamshire Art Society is the encouragement of painting, drawing, printmaking, sculpture and 3D work, along the encouragement of other art related activities within the county of Buckinghamshire.
The Society has always had many professional as well as semi- professional artists many of whom were and are, internationally renowned. It currently has around 100 members, representing a wide variety of styles and media. All members have been elected to the Society on the basis of their skill as artists.
Since its foundation, BAS has organized at least two exhibitions per year, traditionally one in the autumn for members only, and one in the spring, to which
The Young Artist Award, for 16 – 18 year olds, was instituted by BAS in 2001 in order to encourage artistic activities among younger members of the public and to forge links with the art education system. BAS invites all schools and colleges in Buckinghamshire to submit work for the competition, which is run in conjunction with the Autumn Exhibition.
Below are some images from flyers and posters advertising our exhibitions in the early 2000’s