Why I love Norfolk: Rachel Collier-Wilson

Curator Rachel Collier-Wilson with a piece of their work.

Curator Rachel Collier-Wilson with a piece of their work. - Credit: Richard Sawdon Smith

Rachel Collier-Wilson from Creative With Line is an artist with a passion for drawing and printmaking, particularly in response to the natural world. Norwich Pride’s Art Champion and Norwich Queer Art curator, Rachel lives in Norwich.

Memory:

I loved attending Norwich Pride in 2019, the first Pride after I moved here with my wife and daughter in 2018. It felt exciting and powerful to be at a Pride in my city of choice. It was also an acknowledgment of the on-going struggles LGBTQIA+ people face. For me it was so good to be surrounded by so many Queers, especially seeing young people happy in themselves in this safer environment when our otherness was centred and celebrated. 

Landmark

Eaton Park; just one of the splendid Victorian parks in Norwich that’s close to home. It’s well-used by diverse groups of people of all ages. The park is great for a dog walk, a coffee and a chat or just getting outside to look for herons.

Attraction/day out

Great Yarmouth's Hippodrome Circus is enjoying another good year as audiences flock to see its Summe

Great Yarmouth's Hippodrome Circus's Water Spectacular - Credit: Archant

The Hippodrome Circus in Great Yarmouth. It’s a permanent circus built in 1903 and is still going strong. I love the Art Nouveau architecture. A highlight for me is the part of the show when the circus floor sinks into a pool and the water ballet starts. Amazing human feats and women in swimsuits. Love it.

Pub

The Catherine Wheel, an LGBTQIA+ pub in Norwich, offers beers, queers and drag acts. Bernice has been providing safer spaces for Queer people for about three decades. Legend!

Most Read

Place to eat

So many choices but my locals, The York and The Unthank Arms, both do a great Sunday roast. I also love Shiki in Tombland because the food is authentic and amazing. We usually eat there to celebrate our daughter’s birthday as she’s a sushi fiend.

Beach

We often go to Cart Gap because there’s usually space there with easy parking. The coast and seaside were one of my main motivators for moving to Norfolk. I love the way the sea lifts my mood, it feels so good for my mental health.

Shop

Norwich Art Supplies has a great selection and always has what I need for my art business.

Export 

There are so many creatives here. This was another reason I moved to Norwich, to be part of a community of artists and makers. I adore Selina Grazia (@Skullpturas) Safi Butler-Ward (@safi_butler_art) and there’s also me (@creativewithline – apologies for the shameless self-promotion!).

Walk

I love a circuit around the UEA broad, whatever the weather. There’s always something different to see, with added sculptures.

* Rachel's work can be seen at the Raveningham Sculpture Trail until September 4.