The Macclesfield Open was originally sponsored by Barnaby when it started in 2013, going on to become a highly successful exhibition attracting artists from across the northwest. It was held at the Silk Museum until 2018 when the reorganisation of Macclesfield Museums and the absence of an alternative venue led to its premature closure.

Last year it was revived as an online show to raise money for East Cheshire Hospice. Rather than the previous entry fee, artists were asked, when submitting work, to make a donation to the hospice, and when sales were made, most made a further donation in lieu of a commission.

This online version was intended as a one-off, on the assumption that virtual shows would no longer be needed in 2021. However, the postponement of the Art Fair Cheshire, which would have raised a considerable sum for the hospice, led to a change of heart and it was decided to run another online show to help compensate for the hospice’s loss of funds.

This year’s show attracted 420 entries from 150 artists, mostly local. Everything submitted has been included in the exhibition and the standard is exceptionally high. There were no restrictions on who could enter so there is work from artists both young and old and from first time amateurs and seasoned and successful professionals.

The exhibition includes paintings, drawings, prints, photography, sculpture and ceramics and much of the work is for sale. As before, when sales are made, artists have agreed to make a further donation to the hospice. Thousand of pounds have already been raised by the artists themselves and with lots of sales a lot more would be raised. With prices ranging from just a few pounds to over £6000 and works in a wide range of styles, from abstract to photorealist, there is something for everybody. Visitors to the exhibition are also encouraged to donate, with a link to the East Cheshire Hospice website provided.

The exhibition can be viewed at until the end of October.