Rising Stars 2014 is an opportunity to view and collect some of the most exciting new crafts by emerging makers from crafts and applied arts programmes across the UK. Rising Stars is organised by New Ashgate Gallery, Farnham in partnership with Smiths Row and Milton Keynes Arts Centre alongside a-n The Artists Information Company and University for the Creative Arts.
Open submissions were invited from craft and applied art undergraduates, postgraduates and recent graduates who completed their study in last two years. Thirty-two makers were shortlisted for the exhibition and for the Rising Stars 2014 award of £1000, a solo exhibition at New Ashgate Gallery, Farnham and mentoring support from a-n The Artists Information Company.
Scottish jeweller Kelly Munro has been awarded the Rising Stars prize for 2014. A 2013 graduate from Edinburgh College of Art’s Jewellery and Silversmithing degree, Munro takes inspiration from Scotland’s historical fishing industry. Using wood and metal techniques, her jewellery references fishing equipment, nets and lobster pots.
“My inspiration is drawn from my heritage and my homeland” says Munro. “I am surrounded by small abandoned ports around the coast, and have a particular interest in fishing equipment used in the past and present. My work aims to portray the rustic look of items found near harbours and tidelines”
Alongside work by the shortlisted makers, 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 installations that immerse the viewer in fleeting, magical scenarios.
Izzy Parker has also been commissioned to present a performance at the launch of the exhibition on Saturday 7 June from 2-4pm. The Intimate Act of Jewellery forms part of her Intimacy series of interactive installations and jewellery pieces which explore cultural anthropology and question our perspectives on social boundaries.
The full list of selected makers is: 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 judges for Rising Stars 2014 were Maureen Bampton, Director, Bluecoat Display Centre; Lucy Day, the Day + Gluckman curatorial partnership and a professional development advisor at a-n The Artists Information Company; and Rebecca Skeels, designer-maker and Subject Leader for the Post Graduate School of Craft and Design, University for the Creative Arts.
Rising Stars 2014 is supported by Arts Council England and Billmeir Charitable Trust.