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Rising Stars 2015

Supported by Billmeir Charitable Trust


Rising Stars The national showcase of new craft and design talent in the UK

20 March – 9 May 2015 New Ashgate Gallery

Rising Stars 2015 is organised by the New Ashgate Gallery and supported by Billmeir Charitable Trust. In partnership with the University for the Creative Arts.

The New Ashgate Gallery is a destination to view and buy the best of affordable contemporary art and craft by established and emerging artists and makers. New Ashgate is dedicated to promote and champion the best contemporary art and craft in the market place and to provide an unparalleled resource in Farnham, Surrey and beyond. The Gallery curates an exciting programme of changing exhibitions and has an affordable gift shop. As a not-for-profit charity, it also fosters emerging artists and makers through mentoring and touring exhibitions, working in partnership with organisations such as the University for the Creative Arts and the Crafts Council. New Ashgate Gallery Waggon Yard, Farnham, GU9 7PS www.newashgate.org.uk T: 01252 713208, e: gallery@newashgate.org.uk Gallery Open Tuesday – Saturday 10am – 5pm


Rising Stars

Supporting emerging talent

Rising Stars is a platform to view and collect some of the most exciting new visual arts and crafts by emerging makers from crafts and applied arts programmes across the UK. This curated, selling exhibition accompanied by professional development and a ÂŁ500.00 prize; is the fourth year that the New Ashgate Gallery has supported this initiative; many of the selected exhibitors have gone on to high profile careers and elite programmes such as Hothouse supported by Crafts Council.

Surrey Arts supports emerging artists as well as offering development for local visual artists including training, surgeries and networking. We have a strong relationship with the New Ashgate Gallery recognising the quality of work showcased in this intimate gallery that lies within a hub of craft activity, and the associated workshops, talks and outreach work they deliver. We partner the gallery for the much anticipated Surrey Artist of the Year, as part of our SAOS and Open Studios programme.

We also present jewellery by Kelly Munro, the 2014 winner of Rising Stars award. Kelly graduated with a 1st Class BA (Hons) Jewellery and Silversmithing from the Edinburgh College of Art and has in 2013.

The Rising Stars programme offers new graduates an important chance to be part of a selected and curated exhibition and benefit from the wealth of knowledge shared in the symposium. It benefits local graduates in giving them an exhibition to aspire to and lectures to gain essential information and experience to make it in the creative industries.

Open submissions were invited from undergraduates, postgraduates and recent graduates. The judges were Rebecca Skeels, designer-maker and Subject Leader for the Post Graduate School of Craft and Design, the University for the Creative Arts; Caroline Jackman, director, of the New Ashgate Gallery and Alison Clarke, Visual Arts Officer, Surrey Arts. As a part of the Rising Stars programme, we are providing professional development; our first event is an open symposium on Friday 20 March, taking place at UCA Farnham. The second event will be held on Saturday 9th May at New Ashgate Gallery, which is for the selected Rising Stars participants only. The aim of these events is to provide the tool-kits to help artists and makers establish themselves within the market place. Caroline Jackman, Interim Gallery Director New Ashgate Gallery

On leaving college, it can be daunting to enter the art and craft world, so initiatives like Rising Stars can make all the difference to those makers who have such creativity and skills and just need that initial confidence boost. Alison Clarke Visual Arts Officer Surrey Arts


The University for the Creative Arts Partnership The University for the Creative Arts greatly values the support it provides to the Rising Stars Programme, by giving students and recent graduates, from across the country, the opportunity to meet while developing their confidence and knowledge in preparation for their future careers. Working alongside the New Ashgate Trust, the programme creates a professional atmosphere and a continually developing content to educate those starting out in the Arts and Crafts industry. The University for the Creative Arts has courses from Foundation, Access, Undergraduate to Postgraduate and PhD levels covering a wide range of Creative Arts Practices. The Rising Stars Programme is suitable for students working in crafts, fine arts and applied arts at all levels. The Rising Stars Programme includes a symposium, workshops and a selected exhibition. The symposium, held at the University for the Creative Arts, is for all exhibitors and recent graduates and students that wish to build upon their knowledge and skills. Over the past few years there have been some wonderful lectures on business planning, tax issues, applying to galleries, creative programmes for development, insurance requirements, local council opportunities and much more. All attendees have valued the information given by the speakers, many of which are high profile in their area of expertise. Lectures have always been up to date, touching on current issues and concerns. The speakers have given the audience details and information which is not always readily available.

The Rising Stars Exhibition is a fabulous experience for students and recent graduates; applicants apply with a short statement and images of current work. The selection process is tough, but allows the gallery to exhibit new, innovative and well-crafted work from practitioners of the future. Those who are lucky to get selected for the exhibition can see their work showcased within a gallery setting. A private view allows visitors to see the work and meet some of the makers and artists in a relaxed setting of the New Ashgate Gallery. An exhibition in print contains images and information of each artist exhibited with articles to help new and developing small creative practices. This catalogue allows visitors to remember the event and information collected as well as keep a reference for the future of some beautiful work. This year the exhibitors have been invited to participate in a professsional practice workshop. The aim will be to encourage them to think about how they promote themselves and how to develop and push their current collections. The University for the Creative Arts will continue to work with the New Ashgate Trust on this fantastic programme that grows in popularity each year, with the aim of providing students with every opportunity possible to grow and develop their careers in the direction they wish. Rebecca Skeels BA (hons) MA PGCE FHEA Subject Leader for Post Graduate School of Crafts and Design University for the Creative Arts


Makers Lizy Bending Flora Bhattachary Ellie Birkhead Gareth Bunting Laura Burke Jenni Burrows Elizabeth Campbell Kristina Chan Gianluca Craca Harriet Elkerton Emma Finch Emily Gardiner Martin Harman Polly Horwich Monette Larsen Joanna Lloyd Nikkita Morgan Maryam Mottaghi Ji-Hee Park Esme Parsons June Raby Sarah Silve Sophie Syms Olivia Walker Emily Wiles


Lizy Bending

Based in London Specialises in printmaking, ceramics, objects Lizy’s work uses political issues. Artworks have an incredible autonomy and thus, the power to educate. Through her work, Lizy aims to make matters surrounding politics, society, culture and the economy accessible to all. Through visual imagery she plans to break down the boundaries that many feel exist, isolating them from interacting with these subjects. Combining print media with the construction of objects, her practice aims to provoke discussion, using emotive aesthetics that transform socio-political concepts into visually stimulating bodies of work. Lizy has begun to parallel printmaking with object making, using the prints as coloured and textured drawings before entering them into tangibility, creating sculptural works that redefine the spatial potential of printmaking, to include sculpture, installation and participatory prints. Lizy’s work also incorporates external spaces, to interact with the general public and not just the gallery space. Lizy received a BA of Fine Arts from the University for the Creative Arts, Farnham and is currently Artist in Residence at Ochre Print Studio, Guildford.

Flora Bhattachary

Based in London Specialises in jewellery Flora’s interest is in cultural interchange and migration. Her recent collection is inspired by her personal story of her family’s migration to and from South Asia since the 18th Century. Examining the trace of this cultural mixing of her family and her own aesthetic, Flora gathers together historic artefacts and personal stories to develop her designs. Influenced by the colour and geometry of Islamic and Hindu art - and by her experience of working with the stone carver Charlotte de Syllas - Flora has examined the use of pattern in sculptural jewellery. From her initial drawings, Flora hand carves her designs as models in wax. She employs lost wax casting and CAD technology to realise her final designs. Flora has a Distinction at MA in Jewellery Design from Central Saint Martins, a first class BA from Medway College of Art and was formally Director of Electrum Gallery and Contemporary Applied Arts. She has won awards from the Goldsmiths Company, Central Saint Martins and Chow Tai Fook.


Ellie Birkhead

Gareth Bunting

Based in East Sussex Specialises in wood and sound

Based in Rugeley, Staffs Specialises in drawing

What is the most valuable sense to a craftsman? Imagine the sound of a hammer striking a nail or the sound of a tool catching on a lathe. It is sound that warns the craftsman when he is in danger or confirms when he has made a correct move. Ellie’s work explores the value of the sense of sound to a craftsman or maker when engaging with materials.

Gareth Bunting’s drawings document particular times in his life. He is a keen traveller, and often his artworks take the form of alternative maps or travel diaries. Working from sketches and photographs taken during his trips, the drawings merge real-life images with imagery from his own imagination, creating sprawling, timeless and dreamlike landscapes. He is fascinated with memory, and sees drawing as a tool to look back and understand things more fully, but as memories become distorted, imagination fills the gaps and makes a visual world existing somewhere between the real and unreal.

Ellie’s previous work has been inspired by the fact 285 million people across the world today are visually impaired. In this project she aims to take the focus away from vision and show the importance of our other senses, in particular sound. Ellie questions whether you can see or touch sound. Can it be captured within a tangible object? The inquisitive forms that Ellie has produced attempt to contrast different making techniques through their varied surface textures. The sound of making was recorded during the process and is amplified within the objects. Each unique sound tells the story of making to the viewer which is so often lost once an object leaves the workshop. These objects invite us to touch and feel the material as the sound is projected from inside.

Dreams of Moving is a large scale ink drawing inspired by a recent trip across south america. It was drawn from photographs, memory and imagination, very soon after the journey as a way of recollecting thoughts and ideas about the experience of travelling. People and objects of different cultures fade like memories into the impossible labrinthine landscapes, which merge together along connecting pathways containing narrative. Images repeat and alter as I draw from my imagination, and create a dream-like world which touches on reality. They capture a sense of constant movement and change, and the fragility of people and the environment.


Laura Burke

Based in Farnham Specialises in painting Laura’s desire to create and reflect is organic, innate. A natural affinity with paint influences her process; its texture, consistency, the way colours interact with each other, are all part of a joyful experience. As paintings emerge, they invariably reflect the creator back to his/her self. For Laura it is the nuances of life that she finds most pertinent; those that are timeless, universal. However, her finished paintings are not contrived to convey a message or invoke form. At the heart of Laura’s creative process there are no symbols; simply being Laura received a Bachelor of Fine Arts from the University for the Creative Arts, Farnham.

Jenni Burrows

Based in Rochester Specialises in objects/textiles/embroidery Jenni re-works traditional embroidery techniques for a contemporary context to express our interrelation with things and places. Thread connects to key themes within her practice: care, value, process, memory and connection and exceeds traditional definitions of embroidery. Jenni combines her practice as a textile artist with teaching; working in schools and community projects including the Shine Literacy project, Chrysalis workshops for the Gifted and Talented programme in Haringey and for the Multi-Cultural Schools Development Service. Jenni received an MA in ‘Contemporary Embroidery and Thread work’ (Distinction) from The Sir John Cass School of Art (Cass) and delivered her first Arts Council funded community project in 2014.


Elizabeth Campbell Based in Edinburgh Specialises in jewellery

Elizabeth’s creative process is informed by concepts of visual literacy. The dot, line, shape, direction and colour are all crucial factors in visual literacy as they act as a language for us to read and understand our surroundings. Elizabeth is most inspired when elements of ‘visual stress’ are introduced, such as contrast and imbalance. She uses these elements in her work to create bold, modernist designs which aim to fascinate and attract the viewer with colour, pattern and material. Her current inspiration comes from concepts of ‘balance’ and the impact of a lack of balance. These ideas are translated through the jewellery using ceramic, metal and enamel. The use of ceramic honeycomb block as a carving material enables Elizabeth to create tactile and sculptural forms. These forms are then enhances with colourful enamel in a similar process to traditional enamelling, but on an unexpected and innovative material. Elizabeth received many awards since her BA at Edinburgh College of Art including bursaries from Goldsmiths Company and Guild of Enamellers.

Kristina Chan

Based in London Specialises in jewellery Kristina’s work takes inspiration from her surroundings. She is fascinated by the complexities of urban planning and finds beauty in the synthesis between formal structures and natural geography. Whilst completing her Fine Art degree in Paris, Kristina was introduced to the concept of the French garden. These were not the wild woods that she had grown up with in Canada, but strategically designed gardens that dictated where one sat and the paths they walked. It was here, in this labyrinth that Kristina’s examination and her attempt at combining these two worlds began. These pieces, cast in solid 950 Sterling Silver, oxidised bronze and set with semi-precious gem stones are the result of her enquiries. Currently undergoing her Master’s Degree at the Royal College of Art, Kristina’s interest to seek, analyze, and uncover such interactions continue to facilitate her evolving work and future collections.


Gianluca Craca

Harriet Elkerton

Based in London Specialises in print-making

Based in Thame Specialises in ceramics and found objects

Gianluca’s work is grounded in the dynamics of observation and representation of natural structures, with an attitude to research and experimentation which explores boundaries and contradictions of how we visualise and codify nature. Gianluca can define his practice as being multidisciplinary, but the expressive world of contemporary printmaking is the medium through which he can fully express his intent.

The ‘tools’ Harriet creates are inspired by the curious but completely overlooked objects surrounding us. Her work considers the concept of function: looking at the tools which aid our everyday lives. The pieces have a familiarity to them, because of their references to commonplace objects, yet you are caused to question the pieces purpose, ask how does that work or what does that do?

Gianluca is at the Royal College of Art completing an MA in printmaking.

Each piece is constructed from a slip cast porcelain vessel – the forms reference common shapes found in everyday objects – combined with various found or fashioned materials causing internal debate for the viewer, what value do they place? Harriet’s work culminates in a series. She finds it fascinating how a collection of objects can be placed together and immediately they become a series, a relationship develops between them, a narrative develops. Alongside developing further ‘tools’, Harriet has introduced a functional range of porcelain tableware to her practice to seamlessly fit in with everyday use, as well as being the perfect centrepiece for that special occasion. Harriet received a First Class Honours BA in Design Crafts from De Montfort University, Leicester.


Emma Finch

Emily Gardiner

Based in Bath Specialises in ceramics

Based in Brighton Specialises in ceramics

Emma’s work chronicles the ever-changing face of London; the built, rebuilt, remodeled and reused; Creating layers and broken surfaces, laid and over-laid in a constant cycle. Emma captures this in drawings, collage, print and photography; each telling a story but also, as a form of direct documentation. Buildings are her vocabulary; in particular post war Brutalist schemes for the optimism and conviction with which they were designed. They provide the impetus for Emma’s work, documenting and celebrating often undervalued and unappreciated spaces and structures; A commemoration of the dilapidation of buildings and the continuum of overlaid edifices, one over another, epitomised by building sites, demolitions as well as new constructions.

The physicality of matter and convergence of materials are at the heart of Emily’s practice. Coming from a background in interactive media, Emily is unsettled by the modern obsession with virtuality. She believes the physical offers something tangible and therefore more ‘real’ than virtual experience, which is essentially illusory. Emily proposes that if material is reality and reality is truth, the raw, visceral qualities of matter could anchor us to the real world through their physical and tangible existence, in a way that the virtual cannot.

Using images from her photographic records, Emma creates a range of objects, screen-printing and painting directly onto slabs of clay, building up full colour images to achieve rich polychromatic ceramic surfaces. Emma completed her MA in ceramics and glass at Royal College of Art and has been selected for Crafts Council Hothouse programme 2015.

In considering emotional trauma, Emily explores catharsis and the psychological need for embodiment of the intangible and expresses these powerful emotions and frustrations through the material. The glaze seeks release, but is still ultimately dependent on the clay body that contains it. Challenging the relationship between glaze and clay body by allowing the glaze to take on a more physical form exposes states of tension, dependence, containment and liberation. Emily received her MA in Ceramics & Glass from the Royal College of Art.


Martin Harman

Based in Bristol Specialises in ceramics Martin produces unique pieces that develop in ways that are not predetermined. The making process is an important part of generating ideas. The forms are initially made on the Potters Wheel, which traditionally is used to create pots that have a function. For Martin, however the wheel is a transformative tool which can assist in his method of constructing a contemporary art object. He does this by deconstructing and reconstructing geometric shapes so there is also an element of hand building involved. The application of colours, gradient effects and the enhancement of line are crucial to determine the outcome of the work. This is used to add contrast to the inside and outside space, challenging the way the overall form is seen. Although each artwork relates to ideas of Stonehenge and his immediate environment, Martin hopes they can also take on new meanings for the viewer. Martin received an MA in Ceramics, from UWIC Cardiff School of Art and Design.

Polly Horwich

Based in East Horsley Specialises in metalwork/ jewellery/ objects Polly has progressed from her original career in architecture, she studied at UCA (Farnham) and enjoyed a period as Artist in Residence there, before entering the fray as a designer maker of contemporary jewellery. This summer, like a butterfly, she has emerged from the RCA with a new body of work. ‘The Everyday – A World of Listening’ which included no jewellery, so the neckpiece here is presented as the start of the next act. Polly’s work is concerned with ordinary life…. the everyday and how we deal with it. Embracing a ‘why not?’ approach, she explores concepts through language and visual / material studies, making use of materials and technologies beyond the confines of traditional jewellery and metalwork. Polly is interested in how to communicate ideas most effectively and use humour to subvert the familiar and ‘get under the skin’ of everyday preconceptions. Participation in everyday life relies on our ability to communicate. With references to archetypal forms, the domestic environment and fine art imagery, her work considers aspects of hearing and the wider issues of communication. Polly received an MA from Royal College of Art.


Monette Larsen Based in London Specialises in glass

Monette is interested in the idea that what we perceive as beautiful in nature is linked to our conscious or unconscious recognition of underlying patterns and structures. She uses this idea to create forms that suggest movement and life without directly mimicking nature. In this body of work Monette makes small glass spheres that are fused together and formed in the kiln to create larger pieces. In turn these pieces are installed in a composition on the wall to suggest a sense of life and growth. Monette’s work is designed for interior spaces where the glass can play with light and the shadows can add depth to the delicate pieces. Monette received an MA from Royal College of Art.

Joanna Lloyd

Based in Woking Specialises in glass The latin word ‘vestigium’ means ‘a trace or a footprint’, and for Jo it best encompasses the themes that she has been researching to create this new body of work in glass. Currently doing an MA course at UCA Farnham, Jo uses a number of glass casting techniques to build up layers with texture, colour and veiled artefacts to create sculptures that are naturally intriguing. They invite you to look more closely within the strata to view apparently ephemeral objects, each view has a different quality. Originally an archaeologist, Jo has a strong interest in the past and the evidence beneath our feet, which may or may not be visible or legible. Often excavated artefacts are misshapen and take some time to decipher. Jo is now building connections with archaeologists working in Surrey and London to develop the work. So far she has collected medieval and tudor period textures from remains now reburied, including from the Queens Apartments at Woking Palace. The glass processes used include lamp working, multiple kiln firings to build up the varied cast layers of clear and coloured glass, and a great deal of cold working and polishing.


Nikkita Morgan

Based in N.Ireland Specialises in textiles/lampshades The focus of Nikkita’s work is a response to political issues, specifically referring to the North of Ireland conflict. It focuses on the historic, contemporary, political and religious outlook of the struggle and is viewed from her own personal perspective from growing up during these troubles. Nikkita’s work is both large and small-scale using a variety of materials, processes and techniques such as; moving imagery/projections, embroidery, screen-printing, laser cutting, drawing, painting and mono-printing to produce 2D and 3D mixed media textile design artworks. Nikkita’s work pushes the boundaries of design by utilising unique art-making materials and processes. This is fundamental to the production of the work as paper, fabric, acetate and steel are key to conveying ideas relating to transience, fragility and damage and as a method of recording the emotions and reactions to the conflict. This is a continuing theme within her work as Nikkita’s aim is to raise awareness of the North’s troubled landscape to the attention of a wider audience through the medium of her artwork.

Maryam Mottaghi Based in London Specialises in jewellery

It’s exactly in the middle of your face and hard to be missed. Maybe not the main network for communication or the key gateway to expressing oneself, but it’s definitely one of the most prominent features. Discussions of the face refer to the concept of self and Rhinoplasty and lab grown body parts have allowed many individuals to protect, save, change or twist identities in a much quicker way than… These brooches were part of Maryam’s final collection for her MA graduation show at the Royal Collage of Art relating to the concept of beauty surgery and Rhinoplasty investigating issues such as beauty, power and pain as well as trying to use the back of a pin brooch in a more creative way so the pin brooch is going through the ears. By doing this it seems like the wearer is attaching a part of the body (in this case the ears) to their own bodies; engaging in the process. The design has been achieved via a tool called Haptic Arm, it’s a way of hand drawing although different from traditional geometric programs such as Rhino and it lets Maryam make a hollow cameo with a modern twist by being innovative and bringing the back of a brooch into function.


Ji-Hee Park

Based in London Specialises in textiles During Ji-Hee’s studies at the Royal College of Art, she has continuously explored the theme of ‘Natural Light’, closely analysing and eagerly trying to express its endless, illuminating colours and patterns through her designs. Whilst she was at Tama Art University in Tokyo, as an exchange student, Ji-Hee was inspired with an idea that furthered the development of her work on the theme of light. She looked at how the patterns of energy created through movements of a human body were similar to those created by the energy of light. In order to translate the inspiration of her drawings and photographs into fabrics, Ji-Hee has constantly experimented to find new techniques on the knitting machines. These techniques not only uniquely identify her designs but also help to deliver 3D-like effects. Ji-Hee would like people to have a broader perception of knitted textiles. She believes textiles provide a limitless opportunity to express her personal inspirations, and that through its versatility can play a part in the everyday lives of its audience, challenging the boundaries between art and design.

Esme Parsons

Based in Edinburgh Specialises in jewellery Esme’s current collection is called ‘urbanisation’, it is inspired by the shapes and colours of the urban landscape. Particularly influenced by many photographs taken in London, Esme uses these to inform her work by developing shapes seen in the images and selecting colours that she can observe. Esme graduated from the University for the Creative Arts in Rochester with a first class degree in silversmithing, goldsmithing and jewellery, and she is currently an artist in residence at Edinburgh College of Art. Esme specialises in vitreous, kiln fired enamels and mostly use opaque colours to reflect the vivid colours seen in her primary resource images. She is originally from a very rural part of Suffolk and this is where her fascination with urban areas derives from, as she found the hustle and bustle of the city far more interesting than the pace of rural life. She now enjoys observing the industrial and often ‘ugly’ and ‘brutal’ buildings of the city in a light that considers them beautiful, and playing with simple forms that are often over looked, including scaffolding, ventilation grates, traffic lights and satellite dishes.


June Raby

Sarah Silve

Based in London Specialises in ceramics

Based in Shoreham by Sea Specialises in Silversmithing & Jewellery

These Suspended Landscapes describe aspects of the conscious, perceptible surface of land, of self and the sedimented matter that is hidden literally and metaphorically below the surface. They are about fragile spaces, about things that create a sense of place, of belonging and of context.

Sarah is a designer and maker of contemporary silversmithing and jewellery. As a maker she is interested in materiality, mark making and step changes in processes, which also encompasses laser materials processing and casting.

The work describes the unpredictability of the ground beneath our feet. Disrupted not only by geological disturbances, land can also hold a felt experience of eroding solidity. This sense is stirred when instability occurs in our lives through wars, economic depressions, loss of freedoms and family, of a sense of safety and comfort - the everyday struggles of life and death throughout the world - part of the inevitable changes that occur in everyone’s lives. The work explores the manner in which knowledge is layered down, memories of the common and disparate themes in our histories. They are explorations of memory, of the many things that hold meaning, of lived experiences of people, play, and of treasured objects. June is currently a PHD research student at University for the Creative Arts, Farnham.

Sarah’s work is often geometric or architecturally inspired, and can also draw inspiration from observing how things work; for example, her ‘Subtractive’ jewellery collection was developed from the intrigue of a bendy straw. In the jewellery range, material is removed (at places of stretch) so that it resembles decorative gemstones. With silversmithing pieces, Sarah is interested in creating products around communal settings such as the dinner table and entertaining. In her set of napkin rings, each one is different yet has a relationship with the others, rather in the way a family does. Her meze sets have a modular architectural and minimalist aesthetic. They are complemented by highly grained olive wood boards to create decorative reflections.


Sophie Symes

Based in Worcestershire Specialises in jewellery Sophie Symes’ art jewellery pieces are created by combining a diverse collection of ideas and imaginings. Drawing inspiration from her wild rural Worcestershire surroundings and combining this with her love for surrealism and fairytales and their escapist connotations, Sophie makes pieces of wearable sculpture using alternative materials. Sophie applies her traditional jewellery making techniques and spontaneous working method to metals and ‘throwaway’ natural debris materials such as twigs and lichen. Using paper cutting techniques, she hand-pierces delicate organic forms from copper, brass and silver and combines them with the found debris, constructing fantastical adornments. The amalgamation of ‘precious’ metals and found items is intended to address the question of what makes jewellery truly precious.. which materials are intrinsically more ‘precious’ and ‘valuable’... the readily available silver or the fragile lichen covered twig that can never be replicated? In her recent collection, ‘Hybrids’, she has also focused on her interest in history and delved deeper into the world of Victorian curiosity and the collection of strange specimens.

Olivia Walker

Based in London Specialises in ceramics Olivia’s work is informed by her interest in material. She exploits clay’s potential warmth, colour and texture. Olivia’s practice explores the meeting of different materials: the hard brass pushed through organic forms, or rigid spikes cracking open the vessel. The results of this interaction are often surprising – a sharp tension, a violent movement or an undulating grace. Olivia looks to material interaction to speak of human experience. She pierces and adorn thrown forms to create abstract works. These highlight how people grow and change through experience and pain, protecting themselves with spikes, strengthening internally or achieving a graceful fragility. Each piece she makes is a one-off, and each has a tension and dynamic that is unique. Olivia completed a two year part time Masters in Contemporary Craft: Ceramics from University of the Creative Arts Farnham.


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Emily Wiles

Based in Leicester Specialises in ceramics

Kelly Munro Rising Stars winner 2014

Emily’s work has always had a textiles influence behind it, the structure of fabric and the way the creases and folds are uncontrollable has become the backbone to her body of work. Combining materials in new and unconventional ways and pushing the boundaries between the marriage of textiles and ceramics has been the inspiration behind her work.

Scottish jeweller Kelly Munro was crowned winner of Rising Stars 2014 award to receive a prize of £1,000 and support from a-n The Artists Information Company.

Using fabric moulds each piece created is bespoke and unique as she has limited control over the process; the way the fabric moves and drapes as it dries means it almost forms itself and takes on a life of its own. The freedom of the piece then shines through once fired and glazed, even though the porcelain itself is surprisingly strong, materialising in delicate non-functional vessels.

Kelly’s inspiration is drawn from her heritage and homeland. She was born in a small town in the far north coast of Scotland, well known for its historical fishing industry. She is surrounded by small abandoned ports around the coast, and has a particular interest in the fishing equipment used past and present. This inspiration is reflected in her graduation work: the lobster pots. This has evolved through stages of material exploration and settled at the combination of ‘weathering’ wood and traditional metal techniques.

The collection consists of a group of cream pieces, white and grey at the moment, but work has started on a larger range combining the influence of patterned fabrics, including inspiration from spots, stripes and floral prints Emily recived a first class degree from De Montfort University in Design Crafts.

Kelly will be showing a collwwwection of her work alongside Rising Stars 2015 selected artists

Kelly’s work aims to portray the rustic look of items found near harbours and tide lines. Kelly graduated from the Edinburgh College of Art and has 1st Class BA (Hons) Jewellery and Silversmithing in 2013 and is taking place in the Hothouse Crafts Council programme 2015.


The Crafts Study Centre is a specialist University museum and research centre, open free to the public. The Centre’s acclaimed collections include contemporary and modern calligraphy, ceramics, textiles, furniture and wood as well as makers’ diaries, notes and photographs. Inspiring exhibitions and talks by leading artist-makers are held all year round, alongside an annual academic symposium. www.csc.ucreative.ac.uk Crafts Study Centre University for the Creative Arts Falkner Road, Farnham GU9 7DS

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Emily Gardiner, Better Out Than In, porcelain and solid glaze

The New Ashgate Gallery Rising Stars 2015 catalogue  

Rising Stars is a platform to view and collect some of the most exciting new crafts by emerging makers from crafts and applied arts programm...

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