In the warm welcoming foyer of the Regent Centre, is a brilliant new painting exhibition by a small group of extremely talented local artists.

Featuring about 50 fascinating paintings of differing sizes (and price tags), the mediums include oils, acrylics, watercolours, and mixed media; subjects including landscapes, seascapes, animals and flowers, locations including Hampshire, Dorset, Cornwall and Europe.

One of my personal favourites is the vivid and moving work of Marie Peniston, ranging from her beautifully atmospheric West Of Durdle Door, in which you can actually feel the wind, weather, and the texture of its lonely battered chalk cliffs, through her detailed harbour watercolour Day Out At St Ives, to her aching Winter Frost.

Joan Rabe’s powerful dramatic oil paintings including The Dolomites and Lavender Fields benefit from being mounted on 3D woodblocks.

Particularly compelling is Joan Scott’s atmospheric local mixed media Mudeford Beach.

In contrast, Jill Reynolds’ delicate pastel shades often contain hidden details embedded in the work – the mixed media Dragonfly, and the gentle watercolours Stargazers, and Pink.

You’ll need to look carefully to find Judy Page’s tiny acrylic Wood-mouse On Blackberries, but it’s worth it to discover this big-eyed mouse in its atmospheric setting.

Painting prices range from only £40 for Judy’s tiny framed Mouse, to several hundred pounds for the bigger masterpieces – order quickly!

This wonderful exhibition (no entrance charge) runs until Friday May 4 – don’t miss it!

Brendan McCusker