A TWO-week festival celebrating all the fantastic art in the county begins this weekend.

Dorset Art Weeks is returning following a year's break due to the pandemic, and local artists are preparing to showcase their work.

St Michael's Trading Estate, Bridport, will 'buzz' with creativity as artists and makers prepare for a fortnight of exhibitions.

Artist Elizabeth Sporne said: "St Michael’s Trading Estate buzzes with artistic creativity at the best of times and, over the next two weeks, the public will have the opportunity to visit artists and makers in their studios and workplaces, to see what they have all been working on during the last year.

"There’s so much to see at St Michael’s, from Isla Chaney’s organic ceramic sculptures, to Fiona Neylan’s hat studio full of colour, Ella Squirrell’s evocative figurative oils, meticulously painted acrylics by David Brooke, characterful commissioned portraits by Elizabeth Sporne, digital art and painting by Sally Davies, the unique multi-disciplinary creations of Russ Snedker, sculpted landscapes by Jenny Penney, intriguing abstract oil paintings by Peggy Cozzi, and colourful pastels by Caroline Ireland."

Artist Kit Glaisyer will display a series of cinematic landscapes which he has been working on during lockdown at the Bridport Contemporary Gallery on Downes Street. Pieces ranging from small oil sketches to six-foot long canvases will be available for viewing for the duration of the festival.

Venues in Whitchurch Canonicorum and Morcombelake will house the work of four local artists who will display their pottery, paintings and textiles daily during the festival.

This year, organisers of Dorset Art Weeks, which runs from May 22 to June 6, have created a mobile app so members of the public can see the opening times for each venue, some of which require booking in advance to ensure they are Covid-secure.

A spokesman for Dorset Art Weeks said: "Some choose this year to exhibit online, others by appointment visits only, some open like normal and, to allow for a greater flexibility for all involved, the opening times and status of all venues is available on the website and app. Make sure you check the day of your visit to avoid disappointment.

"However you choose to enjoy Dorset Art Weeks this year, there will be something for all tastes and price ranges. Please enjoy all visits safely and respect all Covid-safe measures that have been put in place."

For information on all the events visit www.dorsetartweeks.co.uk