The Annual General Meeting of the Bruton Art Society was held at Caryford Community Hall in Castle Cary on Thursday 22 January at 2.30 p.m. There were forty five members of the Society Present (including the ten committee members). Apologies were received from thirteen additional members. In her report the Treasurer and Membership Secretary Maggie Knight said that the Society had had a successful year, ending up with a profit of £2,230.82, compared to £586.35 of the previous year. The four workshops and two trips covered their costs. We awarded £65 in prizes for the Five Schools Contest. Membership currently stands at 171, a small increase on last year. There had been 35 new members, but 30 members had been lost, two sadly by death. The Society Secretary, Damaris Lee, then provided a resumé of the years events. There had been two visits, four workshops and three lectures. These had all been well attended. The Exhibition Secretary, Clive Dand, reported that the exhibition had been well supported, and the work had been of a high standard. The exhibition had made a profit of £2,231.79, and 79 artists had exhibited. He thanked Bruton School for Girls, who generously made available their hall for the exhibition at no charge, for which the Society is most grateful. He also announced that he was leaving his position, after ten years in it, as he was leaving the area. He then handed over to Tony Langham, who had agreed to be the new secretary. Tony thanked Clive for all his hard work and dedication. He then outlined details of this year’s exhibition. Once again this would be a Bruton School for Girls. The Exhibition run from 15th to 30th August.
John Baxter then reported on the Five Schools Competition, which had been initiated in 2014. The schools taking part in were Bruton School for Girls, Sexey’s School, King’s School, Bruton, King Arthur’s School Wincanton and Ansford School, Castle Cary. Each school submitted six images by students. As well as encouraging young artists, the competition had a merit in enabling students to see work from other schools. This year the first prize will be £50 and the runners’ up prizes will be £30. John was pleased to announce that this year the Competition would be supported by Hauser and Wirth, who were generously making their premises available for the announcement of the results on, and providing support in the preparation of materials.
John Baxter then reported, as Website Manager, on the Society’s website. In the last four weeks it had been receiving approximately fifteen visits a day. There are signs that the website is having a great effect on raising the profile of the society. He suggested it could be used more by members, for example for advertising individual artist’s exhibitions and for reviews of exhibitions. The committee is discussing the possibility of opening facebook and twitter accounts.
The meeting then went on to Committee Membership.
The retiring members are Jenny Farrer, Katharine Skillen and Clive Dand. Jenny has been a Committee member for nine years and was for much of this time responsible for organizing the Society’s programme of lectures and other events. Katharine has been a member for even longer –fourteen years in all. During that time her responsibilities have included organizing the annual exhibition and editing the Newsletter. She has also provided refreshments at innumerable events, including her legendary mulled wine for the Christmas Party. Clive has been on the Committee for nine years, and during a large part of that time he has been the organizer of the Annual Exhibition, as well as offering general support for many of the society’s activities. Sadly for the Society, Clive is leaving the area. The chair wished him all success in his new life in Kent. It is good to know, however, that he will remain a member of the Bruton Art and will continue to contribute to the Annual Exhibition.
After that two new committee members were announced. There were Sarah Hall and Sue Hardy. They and the remaining members of the committee were all voted in.
The programme for 2015 was then announced.
It was further agreed that the Committee would be reviewing the Society’s Constitution in 2015 and provide a restatement of it for consideration at the next AGM. It was also resolved that the Minutes of the AGM would be circulated to members earlier this year, making use of email to do this.
The Meeting ended at 3.15 p.m. It was followed by an excellent lecture by Sarah Sparke ‘Pricing your Work’, which is reported separately.