South West France is beautiful, inspirational and full of history. It abounds in nature and wide open spaces. Which makes it perfect for writers to get on with their work with few distractions. It also makes it difficult for writers to meet other poets, writers and indeed artists. Sheila and Kate began to work together after meeting at the Charroux International Literary Festival which Kate co-founded in the Vienne, Nouvelle Aquitaine. It ran with great success in the village of Charroux and attracted several hundred writers and literature enthusiasts from all over France and beyond. Sheila had already arranged, a poetry residential workshop in her home village of Treignac shortly after arriving in France in 2015. Roger McGough headed the workshop which brought together twelve would-be poets to work for a week under his patient and inspirational tutelage. A change of location for Kate and of direction for Sheila, left them both looking for a new, arts-based venture. In 2021 Artemesia Arts was born.
Artemis is the Greek goddess of, amongst other things, the moon. We glance to the Moon for inspiration as often as most poets. This includes Shakespeare who makes many and frequent references to Artemis. Though its true that our endeavours take place on a more Earthly plane. We are equally inspired by the great seventeenth century artist, Artemesia Gentileschi. A woman who overcame great personal injustice and pain to emerge even stronger through her amazing art. We would like to minimise both injustice and pain and we would like to think that our organisation does much to support achievement in the arts, in spite of the drawbacks, difficulties and dilemmas that life sometimes has in store for us.
Classicists will note that it is the twin of Artemis, Apollo, who is the protector of poetry. We make no excuse for preferring the name Artemis, in its Italianate form, Artemesia. Apollo is a bit too related to the space race. Although it’s true that NASA’s Artemis mission is set to land the first woman and first person of colour on the Moon and to establish the first long-term presence on our closest planet. So perhaps in the future when we look to the moon in our dark night skies, we can imagine a brave new world up there. A world that can continue to inspire poets long into the future as it has in the historic past. And perhaps Artemesia Arts can play some small part in that brave new world.
Sheila Schofield Large is a poet, tutor and a co-founder and president of Artemesia Arts. Her most recent collection, The Vastness of the Sky, was published in 2022 and her first, Thin Ice, in 2019 – both by Mosaïque Press. Sheila has been placed in a number of international poetry competitions, including Poetry News, Yorkmix and The Poetry Kit and her work has featured in magazines, online and on radio in both the UK and in France. A trained personal tutor and former charity chief executive, Sheila now lives in South West France, which gives her the time and space to write, to promote poetry and to support the arts.
Kate Rose is a poet and a co-founder and treasurer of Artemesia Arts. Her collection, Brushstrokes, was published by Mosaique press in May 2022. Her work has been placed in a number of competitions, including highly commended in Segora International in 2020 and 2021. Her poetry has been translated and published, in Italian and Romanian, in collaboration with students and staff at Salerno University and West University of Timisoara. www.katerose.online
Artemesia Arts is a not-for-profit association working internationally with a range of partners. We deliver our objectives through a number of initiatives as follows:
poetry@treignac an annual poetry festival taking place the second weekend in September each year, in the Corrèze Department, South West France. The festival is mainly based on poetry written in or translated into in the English language. It includes a celebration of current work of local and international poets, inspirational workshops hosted by poets, artists and publishers, interviews, networking, a bookshop, good food and good wine.
Artemesia Arts Poetry Competition is an annual poetry competition launched in December 2022, for poets writing in the English language, open to anyone over 18 across the world. Poet, broadcaster, musician, playwright, Roger McGough will be one of our judges for our inaugural competition..
Local projects are part of our plan for the future. We hope to work with young people and adults for whom English and French is not their first language, promoting poetry as a path to creativity, self-expression and communication.
We are delighted to be collaborating with The Treignac Project and Mosaïque Press, and René Shoemaker.
The Treignac Project are an orbit of informal, temporary groups whose institutional materials are available through a matrix of sharing, hosting & careful commitment. Situated in the Corrèze departement of France, established in 2007 by Sam Basu and Liz Murray.
Mosaïque Press is a boutique bibliophile publisher passionate about books. They love giving form to their authors’ ideas, supporting their creativity with their special blend of editorial, design and publishing experience. Their growing portfolio of poetry is published under ‘Chapbooks by Mosaïque Press.’
René Shoemaker is a master silk painter, born in New York City, who maintains studios in Athens, GA, USA and Aubusson, France. Spanning four decades and embracing a variety of mediums, her artwork highlights a sense of place while capturing the ways spaces work together and how people inhabit and interact with those spaces. René has exhibited in museums in Georgia, Mississippi, and Paris and in galleries and public spaces in Georgia, New York, the UK, and France. She teaches and speaks on silk painting and in 2020 she received a Fiber Forward Focus Fellowship from AIR Serenbe in Georgia. www.reneshoemaker.com
We are grateful to the following organisations and individuals for their support
Christopher Fielden www.christopherfielden.com
Artemesia Arts is registered in France as an Association. Registration no W192006106. Our team are all volunteers, and receive no fee or payment from Artemesia Arts for their work or time spent on any of our projects.
We hold an Annual General Meeting in the spring of each year. Announcment of the AGM will be on our facebook page at www.facebook.com/artemesia-arts.assoc
Members of the Association are welcome to attend the AGM , by confirming attendance to email@example.com
Income raised by the 2023 poetry competition contributes directly to the prizes.