Exhibition: Rising Stars 2014

Rising stars leaflet 2014-1Rising Stars 2014 is a touring exhibition of  innovative crafts produced by emerging makers in the UK. Thirty-two recent graduates work from applied arts and crafts programmes will be shown at the New Ashgate Gallery, Farnham (8th March-19th April), Milton Keynes Arts Centre (26 April- 31st May) and Smiths Row, Bury St. Edmunds (7th June-12th July).
Four weavers, Elizabeth Ashdown, Jessica Coleman, Beatrice Larkin and Penny Wheeler will be exhibiting their collections ranging from intricate passementerie – through to bold, monochrome blankets, throws and textiles inspired by the movement of sound.

Rising Stars is a platform to view and collect some of the most exciting new crafts by emerging makers from crafts and applied arts programmes across the UK. This curated, selling exhibition will tour from the New Ashgate Gallery Farnham, to Milton Keynes Arts Centre and Smiths Row, Bury St Edmunds.

Open submissions were invited from undergraduates, postgraduates and recent graduates who completed their study in last 24 months. The judges were Maureen BamptonDirector, Bluecoat Display Centre;Lucy Day, Day + Gluckman curatorial partnership and professional development advisor for a-n, the Artists Information Company; and Rebecca Skeels, a designer-maker and lecturer at the University for the Creative Arts, Farnham.

The winner, to ba announced in March, will receive a cash prize of £1,000, an exhibition at the New Ashgate Gallery, and support from a-n, the Artists Information Company. This year’s shortlist consists of Élodie Alexandre, Elizabeth Ashdown, Juliette Bigley, Rachel Britch, Jessica Coleman, Polly Collins, Brittany Delany, Eva Farkasova, Joanna Fronczak, Jessica Frost, Kerstin Haigh, Ruth Harrison, Anna Collette Hunt, Mirka Janeckova, Anum Khan, Lisa Larcombe, Beatrice Larkin, Anne Laycock, Beth Lewis-Williams, Agnieszka Maksymiuk, Elise Menghini, Kelly Munro, Izzy Parker, Anastasija Pjatnicka, Hajnalka Rezes, Charlotte Stockley, Julia Webster, Simon Wilks, Penny Wheeler, Hannah Rose Whittle, Cristina Zani and Sevak Zargarian.

The exhibition at Smiths Row will feature a site-specific installation by Anna Collette Hunt.  Anna uses clay to animate imagined and historic narratives, creating vivid worlds that delight and stir the imagination.  Inspired by English grandeur and obsessions for collecting, she creates installaiotns that immerse the viewer in fleeting, magical sensations.

Izzy Parker has also been commissioned by all three venues to present a performance at the launch of each exhibition, The Intimate Act of Jewellery, which forms part of her Intimacy series of interactive installations and jewellery pieces which explore cultural anthropology and question our perspectives on social boundaries and asks the question ‘can jewellery provoke intimacy between two strangers…?

Rising Stars 2014 is organised by the New Ashgate Gallery and supported by Arts Council England and Billmeir Charitable Trust. They work in partnership with a-n, the Artists Information Company and the University for the Creative Arts.

Text: Smiths Row website and Elisabeth Ashdown

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