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Rye - its Writers & Artists

Rye has attracted many literary figures including Henry James, Conrad Aitken, Joseph Conrad, H G Wells, G K Chesterton, whereas others like John Ryan, Malcolm Saville and Monica Edwards have dreamt up popular stories such as the swashbuckling adventures of Captain Pugwash.  One of Rye's most famous and best loved authors is probably E F Benson, a one time Mayor of Rye, whose fictional town of Tilling was based on the town Rye recently played host to the BBC as they filmed another series of the popular Mapp and Lucia.  See the Rye Bay website for more details>

Artists like Paul Nash and Edward Burra lived in Rye which, together with the surrounding coastline, has been painted by artists such as Van Dyck, Whistler, the Pre-Raphaelites and John Piper.


Derek Jarman's Cottage by Clive Sawyer

Derek Jarman's garden and cottage at Dungeness.  Explore the bleak landscape which has attracted artists and writers over the centuries.The RSPB wildlife centre is nearby.


Arts in Rye

cultural and creative activities in rye, east sussex

Rye Festival Frieze by Martin Bradshaw

Rye has a  wealth of independently-owned galleries and studios.  If you  are an art buff, you will want to visit the impressive collections of fine art and landscape photography.  Be inspired by the impressive countryside that has influenced so many of Rye's working artists and photographers.

Kino Cinema in RyeKino Cinema
With thanks to some local leaders with vision, many generous local donors and the tenacity of Mike Eve supported by the Town Council and others Rye Bay now has a World class digital cinema showing the latest releases Kino Cinema website

Rye Arts Festival - Visit Rye in September

The Rye Arts Festival will take place in September. Each year the Festival offers a range of cultural events including speakers, literary events, concerts and activities.  Programmes for the next anniversary will be available in July.  See www.ryeartsfestival.co.uk    

Fletchers House  by Martin BradshawFletcher Cinema
John Fletcher, Jacobean Playwright, was born in Fletchers House in Rye (now Fletchers House Tea Rooms) in Lion Street.  Cultural events are run throughout the year celebrating the connection Rye has with John Fletcher.   For events see website

Art & Photographic Galleries in Rye

Clive Sawyer Fine Art Photography
Limited edition photographs printed to the highest quality on fine art paper brushed aluminium and canvas. Gallery in the High street. 01797 222213

Turtle Fine Art, the Gallery at Landgate
Paintings both local and international in all media, together with figurative work, etching, bronze, ceramic, textile, both contemporary and period. 26 Landgate, Rye, TN31 7LH
01797 229999

Rye Art Gallery
The Easton Rooms is recognised nationally for its exciting selling exhibitions of contemporary paintings, prints, photography, ceramics, glass, jewellery, textiles, sculpture, wood and metalwork.  There are at least 6 - 7 shows annually. 

The Stormont holds a collection of over 400 works by nationally and regionally important artists such as Burra, Grant, Bell, Piper, Epstein and Whistler. 107 High Street, T31 7JE 01797 222433

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