Whiteknights Studio Trail - Visiting Artists and Proceeds donated to British Red Cross Ukraine Appeal

The ever-popular Whiteknights Studio Trail (WST) – now in its 22nd year, has once again enticed guest artists from outside the University of Reading area to take part.

The Trail – which takes place on Saturday 11 and Sunday 12 June from 11am to 6pm on both days – features 38 artists at 24 venues. Works from the artists will be on display and many will be available for sale. Artists will be able to discuss their work and take commissions.

Each year, guest exhibitors/artists from outside the University of Reading area are invited to join the Trail, who bring their unique talents to delight visitors and add to the overall offer of Whiteknights Studio Trail.  This year is no exception, and MERL (Museum of English Rural Life) is hosting a gifted ceramicist Ursula Waechter from Aldermaston and a very talented jeweller Machi de Waard who lives in Caversham.

MERL (Venue 23, Redlands Road, Reading, RG1 5EX) is one of the five venues where refreshments are being served.

Ursula Waechter makes functional and decorative earthenware pottery. Hand-thrown on the potter’s wheel from red clay, the pots are dipped in tin-glaze which provides the white background for her painting, using calligraphic brushes and oxides. She worked for many years with Alan Caiger-Smith at The Aldermaston Pottery and draws on the brush-work skills she learned there.

Amongst other designs the combination of red and green and a resist technique are used to create vibrant bowls and dishes. Commissions for lettered work celebrating special occasions are welcome and she offers individual tuition in throwing and using brushes for decoration in her studio space near Kingsclere.

Ursula Waechter, said: “I am delighted to be exhibiting at the Whiteknights Trail, which gives me the opportunity to connect with both visitors and the artists.

“I am pleased to be able to give people in Reading the opportunity to see my work first-hand. It gives visitors the chance to discuss in person commissions they might have in mind and learn more about my making processes. I’m delighted to be at MERL with their collections of tools, which I find hugely inspiring.”

Ursula Waechter

Ursula Waechter

Machi de Waard specialises in modern silver and gold jewellery.  Her jewellery explores the simplicity of a circle, often with a playful gold detail. Machi exhibits all over the country most recently at the Cheltenham Craft Festival, Henley Arts Trail and the Oxfordshire Art Weeks.  In June, Machi will also be exhibiting at the prestigious Bovey Tracey Craft Festival.

Machi’s very popular evening jewellery making classes have started again this month. She teaches how to make silver jewellery as part of the Community Arts Programme at Maiden Erlegh School. 

Machi de Waard, said: “I’m really looking forward to seeing people in person again after the trials and tribulations of Covid.  I can’t wait to chat about jewellery making and talk about my evening classes. The arts trail is ideal not only for people interested in buying a special piece of jewellery, but also those wanting to find out when and where there are jewellery classes in the local area.

“MERL are serving refreshments next to our exhibition, so please come along, relax with a drink and a snack – I would love to spend some time speaking to everyone who visits me.”

Machi de Waard

Machi de Waard

Artists donate proceeds to British Red Cross Ukraine Appeal

In aid of Ukraine, the Whiteknights Studio Trail artists have a very special 20x20cm exhibition on display at the Turret Gallery at the Abbey School.  All 38 artists taking part in the Whiteknights Studio Trail are producing a small piece and donating the sales in aid of the British Red Cross Ukraine Appeal. 

In addition, two artists in residence at the Abbey School in the last year, will be exhibiting their work at the Turret Gallery too. The two artists in residence are Emily Kenny and Kristin Rawcliffe.

Emily Kelly is a printed textile designer, illustrator and mural painter who has worked in New York, London and India. Her work is highly decorative and colourful, and she is inspired by nature, textures, collected ceramics and Indian textiles. Emily works in coloured pencils, acrylics, inks and photoshop, and loves to layer her drawings, combine contrasting styles, techniques and scales.

Emily said: “I'm enjoying sharing my work and time with the Abbey School and looking forward to being part of the Whiteknights Studio Trail.”

Emily Kelly

Emily Kelly

Kristin Rawcliffe is a portrait and figurative artist working in oils using traditional techniques with the addition of vibrant colour to convey life, expression and emotion. 

Kristin recently completed an MA in Fine Art at the University of Reading where she experimented with larger, narrative works and has exhibited at solo and group shows in London and the South East, including the Society of Women Artists and ING Discerning Eye.

Kristin said: “I am passionate about sharing peoples’ stories and emotions through paint and have loved sharing my working process with the girls at The Abbey School this year. I’ve also loved working with Emily and having the opportunity to take inspiration from how she works, in particular playing with gelli printing!”

More information is available on our website:  www.studiotrail.co.uk or follow us on Instagram: #wstreadinguk or Facebook: Whiteknights Studio Trail

Kristin Rawcliffe

Kristin Rawcliffe