Industry and Art

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 Everyman Chorus June 2010Hertford Children sing the Phoenix CanataLocal entrepeneur Paul Miles, who was fortunate to be one of the last apprentices at the Phoenix Works shows Charlotte White, aged 9, the skills of welding in the foundry shop of the Ironworks 



A Decade of Creative Industry & Art at the Foundry Gallery.

‘Industry & Art- A Story of Real Lewes’

June 25-July 3 11-5pm


Artemis Arts is celebrating its 10th anniversary and a decade at the Foundry Gallery in North Street, Lewes. The company was set up by two education specialists, Wenda Bradley and Christine Hall in 2006. With funding from the Heritage Lottery they created and managed the Lewes Phoenix Project ( ) and worked with the local community – from schoolchildren to elderly residents – to capture the stories and images of the Phoenix Ironworks before the area was redeveloped. Now the site has been granted planning permission and will soon make way for a major town centre redevelopment.


The exhibition, ‘Industry & Art-A Story of Real Lewes’ will share some of the extensive archive that Artemis Arts has gathered. The show will be a mixture of history, science, art and music and will include historic photographs from the Reeves Collection as well as, films, recordings and artefacts. Anyone who has information about the Phoenix Ironworks or East Sussex Engineering is invited to come along and share their stories.


Sir Harry Kroto the famous Lewesian Nobel prize winner opened the first exhibition in The Foundry Gallery in 2006 by leading an exciting workshop for all ages showing  how to construct a model of the ‘Buckminsterfullerine’ (‘Buckyball’ ) or C60 atom. He had a lifetime commitment to education and outreach and was a keen artist himself. Before his recent death Sir Harry agreed to show some of his graphic works in the last exhibition in this wonderful industrial venue. Artemis Arts will be holding a Tribute to Harry Kroto on Saturday 24th June.  From 2-4pm there will be another chance to take part in a ‘Buckyball’ workshop. This will be led by Dr Jonathan Hare one of Sir Harry’s co-workers.


Many well known artists have featured in the exhibitions since the Gallery began in 2006.  A selection of these including, Julian Bell, Tom Benjamin, Marion Brandis, Peter Messer and Harold Mockford will be on show and will be part of the exhibition experience. Films commissioned by Artemis and made by Mick Hawksworth will be screened including ‘The Flood’ and one made by pupils from Priory School based on the Phoenix Ironworks.  For a full list of participating artists see


Local composer Helen Glavin’s wonderful music ‘The Phoenix Cantata’ was developed from the research carried out during the Lewes Phoenix project .It is a new choral work inspired by the people and legacy of The Phoenix Ironworks in Lewes where cast iron for the sea- fronts and piers along the south coast were made.  It involves community choirs, soloists and the specially created Everyman Ensemble group of male singers.  The Everyman Ensemble led by Helen has developed into a thriving choir and have made many entertaining appearances in Lewes.

On Friday 1st July excerpts from the work will be sung by The Everyman Ensemble, musical director John Hancorn and The Paddock Singers, musical director Ruth Kerr.  The singers are accompanied by solo violinists Susan Moate. Tickets available from the Tourist Information Centre or on the door £10/£8.


Come and join Artemis Arts in celebrating a decade of inspiring events at the Foundry Gallery that have involved more than half a million visitors, participants, artists, children and students.


For more information contact Christine and Wenda









Notes to Editors:

  • The Phoenix Ironworks started business in North Street, Lewes, in 1832 with a furnace “cooled with a fan driven by a horse walking round a large wheel.” The premises were burnt down in 1835 but, true to its name, the Phoenix rose again in Railway Lane. It outgrew this site and relocated to North Place in 1861. The foundry was run in turn by four generations of the Every family and by the early 1900s was exporting products across the British Empire. The company declined after the Second World War and finally closed down in 1986.
  • Many photographs of The Iron Works and  Artemis events through the ages are available if required.


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