Project: Thursday life drawing classes at St Olave’s Church Hall. Result: Donderdag Collective exhibition at Pyramid Gallery

Tranquillity, chalk and charcoal, by Diane Cobbold

THE Donderdag Collective will be exhibiting at Pyramid Gallery, Stonegate, York from Saturday to June 25.

Founded in 2011 by a group of artists in York, they meet at St Olave’s Church Hall, in Marygate Lane, on Thursday evenings to sketch or paint from a life model (‘Donderdag’ being Dutch for ‘Thursday’).

The group comprises both professional artists and keen amateurs who want to hone their technique or explore new ideas by working freely with a life model.

Comfortable In Your Own Skin, life drawing artwork, by Donderdag Collective member Carolyn Coles

“This exhibition is a celebration of the art of life drawing and an opportunity for the collective to show together the art that they make for pleasure or as a means of earning a living,” says Pyramid Gallery owner and curator Terry Brett.

Fifteen members will feature in the Artists And The Human Form show, exhibiting both life drawings made during the Thursday sessions and other artworks for sale.

Away, charcoal, by Kate Pettitt

Taking part will be: Julie Mitchell; Rory Barke; Bertt deBaldock (aka Terry Brett);  Diane Cobbold; Carolyn Coles; Leon Francois Dumont; Jeanne Godfrey; Anna Harding; Adele Karmazyn; Michelle Galloway; Andrian Melka; Kate Pettitt; Swea Sayers; Barbara Shaw and Donna Maria Taylor.

The artists will attend Saturday’s official opening from 11am to 2.30pm, when wine, soft drinks and nibbles will be served. Gallery opening hours are 10am to 5pm, Monday to Saturday; closed Sundays.

Ring Of Fire, oil, by Leon Francois Dumont

Six of the best artists from Arnup Studios go on show at Blossom Street Gallery

Fire Spirals Bowl by Hannah Arnup

SIX York artists and makers are taking part in the Arnup Studios Group Exhibition at Blossom Street Gallery, Blossom Street, York, until March 28.

Arnup Studios, in Panman Lane, Holtby, near York, was originally the home and workplace of renowned painter and potter Mick Arnup and sculptor Sally Arnup. Now their daughter, potter Hannah, is continuing its creative story.

This Could Be, by Michelle Galloway

Exhibiting alongside her are Michelle Galloway, Emma Frost, Kate Pettitt, Reg Walker and Emma Welsh, who all have studio space in the village studios.

In Sally’s Studio, Hannah creates stoneware decorative pottery, handmade for everyday use and enjoyment, her pieces appealing to both practical and aesthetic values. She also enjoys making one-off sculptures and tripod pots that form a delightful addition to this month’s exhibition.

Watford Pylons, by Emma Frost

Working in the Pottery Studio, Michelle Galloway paints calm, harmonious watercolours, quiet and contemplative, atmospheric, yet gentle and light, punctuated by the intensity of her oil paintings. Her inspiration comes mostly from her interest in archaeology, architecture and man-made structures.

Landscape artist Emma Frost works in acrylic paint in the North Studio, where she conjures scenes that depict the world around her, exploring the constant presence of power lines and structures in her daily life, resulting in a body of work showcasing pylons, telegraph poles and such like. Work is nearly entirely created using palette knives, incorporating some large brush work.

Breathe, by Kate Pettitt

Based in the Gallery Studio, Kate Pettitt specialises in studio and plein air paintings and drawings of the natural environment and the human form. She works in a variety of media from oil to charcoal, her work being elemental, instinctive and often textural.

Reg Walker constructs abstract sculptures, both contemplative and playful, mostly in steel and aluminium, in the Kiln Studio. He also makes small pieces for the hand, in bamboo, and distinctive collages in natural materials. For Blossom Street Gallery he has created a collection of paperbark collages from the natural shedding of the Japanese birch tree in his garden.

Paperbark collage, by Reg Walker

From the South Studio, Emma Welsh creates silver, gold and platinum jewellery. Each piece is hand-made individually using traditional techniques. For this exhibition she has assembled a fossil-themed collection inspired by happy days spent searching for ammonites along the coast.

Kate Pettitt and Reg Walker will attend a Meet The Artist event at Blossom Street Gallery, York, on March 12. Gallery opening hours are 10am to 4pm, Thursday to Sunday.

Geometric fossil earrings, by Emma Welsh

Who are the NEW artists in 2021’s York Open Studios? The final fab four to find

Here Be Monsteras potter Kayti Peschke working in her Fangfoss garage studio

YORK Open Studios’ 20th anniversary celebration of the city’s creative talent begins this evening with a 6pm to 9pm preview. Head to to find out which artists and makers will be “warming up” for the two weekends ahead.

After the Covid-enforced fallow year of 2020, York Open Studios returns with 145 artists and makers opening 95 studios, homes and workplaces tomorrow and Sunday, then July 17, from 10am to 5pm each day.

Among them will be 40 debutants, prompting CharlesHutchPress to highlight newcomers in a week-long preview, in map guide order, that concludes today with the final four as York prepares for this month’s showcase of ceramic, collage, digital art, illustration, jewellery, mixed media, painting, print, photography, furniture, sculpture and textiles skills.

An abstract sculpture by Reg Walker

Reg Walker, sculpture, Kiln Studio, Arnup Studios, Panman Lane, Holtby, York 

REG crafts abstract sculptures, sometimes contemplative, sometimes playful, mostly in Corten steel, together with small pieces for the hand in bamboo and distinctive collages in natural materials.

He took up sculpture when inspired by volunteering at the Yorkshire Sculpture Park, near Wakefield, where he then took part in hot and cold metal courses.

Reg Walker: Moved into Arnup Studios two years ago

Originally from Ireland, Reg settled in Yorkshire in 1988, working in social research and organisation development. He had a studio at Kildale on the North York Moors before moving to Arnup Studios in Holtby in 2019.

He will open his studio for this evening’s preview.

Michelle Galloway: Loves experimenting with different techniques

Michelle Galloway, painting, The Pottery Studio, Arnup Studios, Panman Lane, Holtby, York

MICHELLE moved to York to study art, developing a lasting interest in art history, archaeology and architecture.

Her artwork took a backseat when she retrained as a teacher, but she continued to pass on her passion for art through children’s workshops.

When the opportunity for a temporary studio arose, Michelle rekindled her own creativity and love of experimentation with different techniques. She now has a permanent studio at Arnup Studios.

“My latest work is oils on large canvases,” she says. “Using small brushstrokes to build up layers of colour, the variation of colour and tone achieved creates an abstract and ethereal quality.”

Michelle Galloway in her studio

Michelle describes her oil paintings as having an intensity to them, whereas her watercolours are “mostly calm, harmonious, quiet and contemplative, atmospheric, yet gentle and light”.

“I work from my own sketches and photographs of the location, meaning that all my senses are engaged with the subject,” she says. “I sketch and make notes to myself, decide what to include or subtract, and use a camera to record both the larger scene and tiny details, an instant where the light changes or a fleeting glimpse of something of intrigue.  
“Back in the studio, I can take my time and work at my own pace. I can combine all the information with my personal and emotional response to create a visual interpretation.”  

Michelle will be welcoming visitors to this evening’s preview.

A brace of ceramic trios by Judith Glover

Judith Glover, ceramics, Brambles, Warthill, York 

JUDITH specialises in sculptural ceramics, using the technique of coiling.

“My work is often presented as trios, thus emphasising the relationship between the pieces,” she says.

“Inspired by Italian still-life artist Giorgio Morandi and British painter, designer and illustrator Rex Whistler, I often incorporate different strata of clays in the same piece to give a painterly quality.

“Ceramic artists Jennifer Lee and Ashraf Hanna influence my unglazed hand-built work with clean lines that enhance the interior design of homes.”

Judith Glover with one of her sculptural ceramics

Judith learned the basics of pottery through studying with Su Rogers in Guildford. “Re-locating to North Yorkshire in 2010, I continued to develop my practice, specialising in sculptural hand-building,” she says. “My base clay is generally a Potterycrafts recipe, which contains a red clay from Derbyshire and buff fireclays from Shropshire.”

Her latest pieces, developed in the 2020-2021 lockdowns, are of imaginary landscapes and seascapes. “They use flattened coils and inserts of different clays to create painterly pieces,” says Judith, who is a member of the Northern Potters Association and an associate member of the Craft Potters Association.

All proceeds from sales of her work go to IDAS, the North Yorkshire charity that supports those affected by domestic violence.

A couple of cups, made by Here Be Monsteras ceramicist Kayti Peschke

Here Be Monsteras (Kayti Peschke), ceramics, Ashtree Lodge, Gowthorpe Lane, Fangfoss, York

KAYTI creates ceramics under the name of Here Be Monsteras from her garage studio in her garden in the Wolds, east of York.

Her background is in photography and magazine design, but two years ago she started making pottery and now she has converted full time. “It has become an obsession,” she says.

Kayti makes wheel-thrown ceramics with stoneware clays, “all with a lovely speckle and texture that are wonderful tactile”, to create functional objects for the home.

“Brushstrokes form the decorative styles using a mix of glazes, hand-coloured clay and wax-resist techniques,” says Kayti. “I also screen print pots, using my own hand-cut designs and I love working on colour palettes, with limited runs for each season.”

She has worked on screen-printing ceramics with artist Jade Blood, creating travel cups and a full dinnerware set, as well as collaborating with restaurants and cafés that serve their menus on her tableware.

“A cup of tea in a handmade cup really does taste better, maybe because the process feels more special or you take more time over it? I’m not sure why, but it’s true,” says Kayti.

Taking shape: Kayti Peschke in hands-on mode in her studio

In her home studio, the cups of tea flow and her dogs hang out in the sunshine as she listens to BBC 6Music or podcasts. “I absolutely love being out there, creating, and hopefully this shows in the things I make.

“All the pieces I create are made to be practical and often multi-functional. It’s so important to me that they’re used and enjoyed and bring a little bit of extra joy to the day!”

As testament to that, her ceramics can be found in York at Kiosk, Fossgate; Sketch By Origin, York Art Gallery; Jolly Allotment, Walmgate; Flori, Walmgate; Melk, SparkYork and Clifford Street, and Botanic York, Walmgate.

Beyond York, Yorkshire stockists include The Hispanist and Two Gingers, both in Paragon Street, Hull; Plant & Paint, Humber Street, Hull; The Gallery, Malton; The Art House, Wakefield; Flavour Like Fancy, Meanwood, Leeds; Mr Cooper’s, Whitby, and Mlkwood Studio, Bridlington.

Kayti will be giving throwing demonstrations at 1pm and 3pm each day during York Open Studios.

A painting by Ian Cameron, one of 145 York Open Studios artists in 2021. Find him – but maybe not this bird – in his back garden at 65, Green Lane, Acomb, York

TO find full details of all the York Open Studios artists and makers, their studios, opening hours and examples of their work, go to:

The 95 locations will be highlighted on a map of York to help visitors navigate their way to as many studios, workshops and homes as they wish. 

Visit to look at the York Open Studios map.  Alternatively, free printed brochures with the map can be picked up from Visit York, on Lendal, or in shops, restaurants and visitor attractions around the city. 

2021’s York Open Studios will be Covid-compliant, with artists adhering to Government guidelines on social distancing, ventilation and sanitisers, keeping themselves and visitors safe throughout.