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Artwork donated to mark cricket club centenary

Artist Joanne Dexter presents her oil painting to Olicanian Cricket Club president Mick Christopher

A local artist has donated a painting to mark the centenary of Olicanian Cricket Club.

The oil on canvas is the work of Joanne Dexter who has done the piece free of charge. The artwork will be hung in the club’s new pavilion on Denton Road in the coming weeks.

Joanne, from Burley in Wharfedale, said: “I wanted to do something for the club because they have been through some difficult times in recent years. All their memorabilia was destroyed when their former clubhouse was burnt down in 2019. The new clubhouse is magnificent, but they needed some new memorabilia and I thought a painting of the ground might go some way towards achieving that.”

The original will soon be hanging in the clubhouse and prints will be available for members and non-members to purchase.

“The painting is a representation rather than a literal depiction of the club’s Denton Road ground and its new clubhouse. It’s my interpretation of the scene and I hope people like it,” she said.

Mick Christopher, the club’s president said: “I think it is a magnificent piece of work. We’re very grateful to Joanne for painting this for us and we look forward to enjoying the image for many years to come.”

Olicanian’s centenary celebrations kick off this weekend with a reunion of former players at the ground this Saturday.

“The first team will be at home and we’re inviting anyone who has ever played for the club, whether it be as a senior or a junior, to join us for the reunion,” said Mr Christopher.

The reunion will start from around 4.30pm. On Monday evening there will be a junior centenary event from 6.00pm and a T20 match against Ben Rhydding will take place on Wednesday from 6.00pm. The centenary week climaxes with an all day match against MCC on Friday, July 15 from 11.00.

Meanwhile, Joanne’s reputation as an artist has been growing in recent years. She spent six months during the latter part of last year and early 2022 as the artist in residence at Moss and Moor, the garden centre at Ben Rhydding, and currently divides her time between creating artworks and being a professional soprano.

In recent weeks she has been appearing in Opera North’s production of the Wagner opera Parsifal which had its final performance at the Southbank Centre in London last week.

“I like being creative,” she said. “I’ve loved my music career and I intend to continue doing that but, at the same time, my passion for painting has grown in recent years and I find that expressing myself on canvas is very satisfying.”


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