Officially opened by Chestnut Tree House Patron, The Snowman™, the exhibition – #ForTheNow – is the brainchild of Cuckfield-based photographer, Sophie Mitchell. Sophie worked closely with the Gallery and Chestnut Tree House to create a unique display, which aims to showcase the different aspects of the children’s hospice.
A small, independent gallery, near Haywards Heath, The Green Tree Gallery has been celebrating its 10th birthday this year by supporting Chestnut Tree House throughout the year. The Gallery’s year-long campaign aims to raise both funds and awareness and included ‘Through the Eyes of a Child’, an exhibition inspired by Chestnut Tree House, which was opened by local MP Sir Nicholas Soames.
Jill Housby of the Gallery said: “Right from conception, the whole ethos of the Gallery has been to promote local endeavour, and so to mark our 10th anniversary year, we really wanted to help our local children’s hospice.” Samantha Phillips, who jointly runs the Gallery with Jill, added: “Having visited Chestnut Tree House and been moved by the very valuable work carried out there, we were determined to try and help the charity in any way we could during our 10th year.”
#ForTheNow is a series of vivid images which invite you to take a glimpse into life at Chestnut Tree House children’s hospice. The exhibition focuses on two children cared for by Chestnut Tree House, Charlotte and Jacob, and the images also feature members of the hospice’s care team. The photographer, Sophie Mitchell, wanted people to see inside their world, and see what Chestnut Tree House is really like.
Sophie Mitchell said: “This collaboration between myself and The Green Tree Gallery is uncharted territory; to put on a completely non-profit show as a way of raising awareness for such a valuable cause is not something we’ve done before. We wanted to raise awareness, to shine a light on the work that the charity does. Photographers are story tellers and although the images don’t catalogue every aspect of Chestnut Tree House they hope to provide a vivid insight into its personality.
“Creating this series of images has been an overwhelming experience, to step outside of my world and photograph another that’s so far removed from my own. I set out to tell Chestnut Tree House’s story, to engage and ask questions. These images are my personal perspective of the joyous, warm, homely oasis that is Chestnut Tree House.”
The #ForTheNow exhibition at The Green Tree Gallery is open until Friday 21 December (Tuesday–Saturday, 10.30am–4pm, and Sundays in December 12.00-4pm).
Highlighting the importance of community support, Jayne Todd, Community Fundraiser at Chestnut Tree House said: “We are so incredibly grateful to The Green Tree Gallery for all their support during 2018. In addition to helping us by raising funds, I’m sure that this new exhibition will increase awareness of the vital work that we do for local children and families. It has been wonderful to work with Sophie Mitchell for this exhibition – she is a very talented photographer and has captured the essence of Chestnut Tree House beautifully.”
More information: www.chestnut-tree-house.org.uk