The Granary Creative Arts Centre is an independent arts venue established in 2016. We are based in a beautiful converted 17th Century granary in Brookwood Park (20 minutes from Winchester City Centre).
What we do
Host and curate unique, high-quality creative workshops, events and performances
Hire out studio space to local artists and creative groups
Develop and support local artists and unique projects
Work with schools, communities and businesses – bringing the ‘art of play’ to wherever it is needed
Make things that move people, connect people, and inspire people
Create an atmosphere that is always friendly, supportive, informal, accessible and empowering
Whatever we do, we’re passionate about making it high quality and an experience that moves people. We’re all about the art of play, empowering people to get creative, encouraging and supporting craft skills, and using creativity to connect to the truth within and without.
"If you are searching for a warm welcome at a local venue where the creative arts and people are nourished, this is the place. The exhibitions are thought provoking and real, mixing local talent with established artists."
Meet the team
We’re small, we’re friendly, and we love to hear from anyone who jives with us.
If you get in touch over email or Facebook then you will be talking to either Kezia Hoffman (Founder and Artistic Director), or Amy Hardingson (Website Manager and Marketing Officer). We work together to look after our artists and audiences, and make sure all our events and workshops are promoted and run smoothly.
We also have many other volunteers in our Granary family who regularly help us out with setting up events, tidying up, and odd jobs. We couldn’t make the Granary work without them.
The Granary Family
(Our Artists in Residence)
Kezia Hoffman - Visual Artist/Sculptor
As well as running the Granary, Kezia also teaches Art to Home Education students and at pupil referral units, and runs a number of evening and weekend art workshops and courses throughout the year that encompass everything from ink to spray paint, stone carving to life drawing. Her own art draws on our connection to the natural world, the wild and the innate playfulness that makes us human.
Kezia Hoffman is from a family of artists and has a degree in Fine Art Sculpture from Winchester School of Art. She lives and works in Winchester, Hampshire and has two teenage sons, both creative souls also. Kezia has facilitated over 600 Arts & Community engagement workshops over the past 18 years, including work with schools, youth groups, Naomi House Hospice, colleges, pupil referral units, SENs, Tutu Foundation UK, Camp Bestival, Boomtown, Standon Calling, West Dean College, Alresford Music Festival, the Graze Festival, Hat Fair and festival lantern processions.
"I believe in using the arts as a tool for social change and am committed to inclusivity and developing ideas that can help people think, feel, laugh and become more connected, to themselves and each other. I feel part of 'what’s missing' from our lives is our connection with hand tools, and old skills and the encouragement to explore them. My mission is to provide the workshop, materials, tuition and encouragement to allow a space for people to build confidence, take creative risks, build skills and develop ideas. I have witnessed how people smile and connect more with strangers in a positive way when engaging in workshops or events. The impact the arts can have on our lives can send ripples into the way we engage with each other, our businesses, our families, our relationships and our own internal dialogue with ourselves. How many areas in our lives are we actively encouraged to take risks in? In the world of arts, theatre, music, movement and language we need risk taking to help ideas evolve. That's when it gets exciting..."
Amy Hardingson - Writer, Poet, Storyteller
Amy is an interdisciplinary writer who loves to cross, blur and connect genres, boundaries and binaries. Amy is starting a writing workshop for autumn 2019 at The Granary which will explore intersection and how different mediums can open us up to new possibilities of powerful atmosphere and truth telling in our writing. She will also be hosting a spoken word night after each session with storytellers, writers, poets, readers, musicians and listeners all welcome to experience, practice and be moved by the power of words.
Her own work has spanned playwriting, screenwriting, poetry, short stories, and performance storytelling. She spans many different genres too, with a particular love of magical realism, fantasy, fairy tale and folklore. Since becoming a parent she has focused more on the directness of personal and visceral poetry (combining storytelling skills with raw vulnerability that often packs a political punch), as well as recrafting or excavating fairy tales for telling to children that embody feminism, multiculturalism and intersectionality.
“Stories make the world go around. They are all around us and can be both an incredible force for kindness or hatred. I don’t think enough writers or writing programmes talk about our responsibility as storytellers. It’s so important to respect our heritage, protect context, to elevate nuance, and to strive for truth. I believe that storytelling is a human right, and that many people deny it to themselves.
Back in the day, everyone was a storyteller. You would tell stories to your friends, to your children, to your grandchildren. Sat at the pub of an evening, or round the fire in the deep of winter we would entertain ourselves and share part of our experiences. For a long time our stories were collectively crafted by the whole community, and every member of your village had a voice. These days a lot of people get put off of writing early-on. People think of it as an unattainable discipline that is only for professionals, and they are often left with no outlet for their truths and experiences. It’s such a shame. We all lose out because of it. I hope to empower people with the skills that make writing a joy again. I want to take away the anxiety and the notion that there are rules we must follow. I want to prove that sharing your stories in any form is a worthwhile act and that there is no one way to do it – even (or especially) if you have dreams of being published.”
Follow Amy on Instagram: @amyhardingson
Bex Willis - Artist, Cyanotype Printer, Yarnbomber
Bex is a BA Fine Art Graduate from the University of Southampton's Winchester School of Art (2017).
She is currently experimenting with different printing techniques as part of her practice. In particular Cyanotype Printing which is considered one of the oldest forms of photography and produces a cyan-blue print, often referred to as a Blue-Print. Focusing on natural forms, she draws inspiration from her rural surroundings at The Granary, and also from her love of gardening.
Her work can be found in Projects Boutique & Kitchen, as well as The Fulflood Gallery, Winchester (as well as online). Following two successful workshops at The Granary and The Nutshell, she is currently organising a selection of workshops over the coming months which will introduce participants to the world of Cyanotype printing and it’s many possibilities!
"The main focus of my practice and consequently the pieces that I make, is public engagement. My aim is to place work in the public domain in the hope of raising awareness about the political and social issues affecting modern day society. Amongst many, these have included poverty, homelessness, recycling, and the need for blood donors. "
Jason Buck - Storyteller, Writer, Illustrator
Drawing on traditional favourites and introducing new ideas, Jason's stories are told in the oldest and best ways – as live performances, for modern audiences and he has performed across the UK and mainland Europe, blending traditional and contemporary motifs, vocal sound effects and pure, unadulterated fantasy.
Jason has been a performer most of his adult life, including gurning, comedy and sword swallowing, but his passion lies in stories - there's nothing like getting lost in a story, the pictures in your head are better than film. Jason has written and published four collections of his own stories, won silver at 2017's Grand Annual Lying Festival and recently won 'Best Bard' at Profound Decisions' 'Theatre of Joy and Sorrow'. He is also unnecessarily tall and has a memorably large moustache.
Follow Jason on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/JasonBuckStoryteller/