ARTISTS around Swindon will put down their brushes and throw open their doors to the public as Swindon Open Studios returns to the town.

Featuring more than 50 local artists, including aviation specialist David Bent, the personality of each artist will be on show for all to see as the public get a special opportunity to visit their workspaces.

A number of new and original pieces will be on show, and the Old Town Business Association has organised for art to be displayed and sold in its shop windows during the last few days.

Linda Kasmaty, member of the Open Studios committee, which includes artists Jane Milner-Barry and Rachel Pryor, said: “This has been running for about seven or eight years now on an annual basis and there are some brilliant artists taking part. It seems to be getting better all the time.

“What is happening is the artists that have taken part regularly are becoming more professional. I have noticed a real change in people improving what they are doing and presenting themselves very well.

“The reason I got involved was to support the work of my husband Jim Carroll, who has been doing a project on 100 years of Swindon – that is paintings from anywhere in Swindon, not necessarily huge landmarks.

“There will be some 50 artists taking part altogether and the standard is just stunning.”

Carole Bent, wife of David, who is a regular feature of the Open Studios, said: “The nice thing that has happened is that businesses around Old Town are also putting up artwork in their windows.

“On the weekend of September 6 and 7, the first of the two weekends, there is also a sausage and ale trail in Old Town, so things should come together nicely.

“It is good for people to know how much talent there is in our town. David is just one of those very talented people, but Open Studios is about a whole array of artists who open their homes and studios to the public.

“David is well known for his modern aviation art so there will be a number of original paintings here, including Timeless, which is the cover of the book that was done in celebration of the Red Arrows and Breitling that was presented to Prince Charles.

“There is a lot of creativity in our town and we do this to give people the opportunity to share in that.

“The original pieces are not going to be here for very long, and the unique thing about this is people get to see where that artwork was created and the inspiration for it.”