Artist Feature

Rowena Park - Jewellery

3 November 2019  / Artist Feature

NEH spoke with Rowena Park this week to find out more about her and her work.  

1. How long have you been involved with NEH open studios?

This is my first year.

2. Is the experience different from other places where you have shown/ sold your work.  I have not shown work here previously, but I have visited every year since it started and bought many a Christmas gift and treats for myself. There are always bargains to be had so it has a feel of “get there early so you don’t miss out”.


3. What inspires your work?

All kinds of everything – deckchair stripes, landscapes seen from the air, walking on the South Downs, science programmes.

4. What work will you be showing this year? Tell us what you will have for sale.

I will have a mixture of my current ranges, and “ends of line” bargains which will be half price, when they’re gone they’re gone! Bangles, earrings, pendants, cufflinks, brooches and rings – in all kinds of colourways.

5. Tell us something about your experience of last year’s open studios - any surprises, discoveries, interesting encounters?

I had a very rushed visit last year as I was off to another show with my work the same weekend, I came away with some lovely cards and some Christmas decorations, tea towels and cushion covers. There are always great things to find.

6. Tell us something about what you have you been doing over the last year?

I have been developing a new geometric range of work that I’ve had in mind for some time – ideas tend to buzz around in my head sometimes for years before I get a sense of what I want to do with them so I will have some of this on sale and hope that it appeals to the visitors. I have also had a studio built in my garden so am in the process of moving from my studio in the Phoenix where I have been for a very long time – it’s a strange mixture of feelings, but I wanted to be able to work in a more sustainable way using less energy, and this seemed a good solution.

7. How does living and working in Brighton affect your work?

It’s a town full of artists and inspiration – I came to college here and have not been able to leave, like so many others. I love the buzz of Brighton, and the calm of the South Downs, so close to each other.   We have a brilliant May festival, and Artists open house twice a year and there are lots of opportunities for selling work locally. 

8. What do you like about New England House - what makes NEH open studios special?

It is a one off event organized for artists and makers, by artists and makers. It has a friendly feel – like visiting old friends who happen to make lovely stuff, and even let you have it at bargain prices, and it is timed just before Christmas so it is perfect for those of us who like to shop in December.

9. There are so many exhibitors at NEH, how would you advise visitors to plan their visit?

Floor by floor – I have found the floor plans provided so useful so if time is limited you can make sure you get to the people you are looking for.

    Where else can you see Rowena Park's work:

    IO Gallery in Sydney Street, and Brass Monkeys on Portland Road in Hove – both lovely shops, completely different, a bit quirky – so Brighton (and Hove).

    During the Christmas Open Houses Rowena will also be at Venue 21 in Hove.

    For more information view Rowena Park Profile.