YORK Open Studios’ two April weekends are fast approaching.
More than 150 artists and makers within the city or a ten-mile radius of York will open their doors to visitors, presenting painting and print, illustration, drawing and mixed media, ceramics, glass and sculpture, jewellery, textiles, photography and installation art.
Opening hours will be 10am to 5pm on April 15 and 16, followed by April 22 and 23. In addition, a preview evening will be held on April 14, from 6pm to 9pm, with details of participating artists available at yorkopenstudios.co.uk and in the event directory distributed around the city.
Admission is free for these opportunities to view and buy art and gain an insight into artists and makers’ inspirations, creative processes and skills.
As ever, regulars will be taking part alongside York artists and students new to the annual event that is always keen to champion emerging talent.
Three bursary artists will showcase their work: Peter Baker, whose his site-specific installation in reclaimed wood, shards and shells on four floors responds to the quirks and constraints of Fishergate Postern Tower; Jade Blood, contributing to the “People’s Banner”, a community textile at Bootham School Arts Centre, Bootham, and Sam Edward, hiding tiny sculptures around the city centre to be found during the weekends.
Edward, from South Cottage Workshop, in Shipton Road, has scattered small concrete sculptures that he describes as “miniature monuments, resembling obelisks, monoliths and memorials, but scaled down, to memorialise moments from York”.
In his work, he has snatched overheard conversations and appropriated text to commemorate the time we are living in.
In addition, in his studio, you will discover the production behind the monuments and see the process live as an ongoing work.
New participants are: realist watercolour painter Nduke Omeife, at 37 Baker Street, Clifton; furniture designer and maker John Green, 4 Compton Street; Joanne Edmonds, watercolour painter of architecture, interiors and decoration, at PICA Studios, Grape Lane; painter Rae George, sharing her experiences as a woman artist in her mid-30s inspired by art history, expressive colours and fleshy forms, at PICA Studios, and Lisa Power, who paints and draws 3D small cottages based on Irish vernacular architecture, also at PICA Studios.
Illustrator Sammy Davies, at 32 Emerald Street, focuses on mixed-media works on paper, inspired by nature and mind meanderings; Ali Hunter, at 52 Rose Street, creates pen and ink drawings on paper, drawn from home interiors, fashion, style and décor, inspired by Instagram; Gonzalo Blanco, at Rose Dene, Moor Lane, Strensall, paints perspectives of York and Yorkshire in oils through the seasons.
Marta Szulczewska, at Creative Studio York, Unit 14, Bull Commercial Centre, Stockton Lane, makes functional ceramics in stoneware clay, from mugs, vases and plant pots to dishes and ornaments, each finished off with a positive inscription. Printmaker Jen Dring, at 53 Burnholme Avenue, explores the name of God in her imaginative linocuts and experiments with collage printing triggered by small moments in daily life.
Painter Kerry Ann Moffat, at 33 Third Avenue, Heworth, works in oil on upcycled pieces of wood and handmade cotton rag, highlighting the contrast between light and shadows. Photographic artist Amy D’Agorne, at Apartment 4, 5a Hallfield Road, specialises in long-form research-based projects, shot on analogue film, pitched between documentary and fine art.
Lesley Peatfield, at The Studio, The Old School, Skirpenbeck, experiments with cameras, phone, techniques and approaches in her landscape, abstract and street photography of whatever catches her eye. Illustrator/artist Nick Ellwood, at 7 Lastingham Terrace, celebrates people, character and behaviour through his paintings, drawings and prints.
Relief printmaker Jon Haste, at Unit 15b, Danesmead Business Wing, York Steiner School, 33 Fulford Cross, creates hand-made limited editions inspired by flora and fauna, natural habits and wild experiences in the outdoors. Printmaker Rachel Holborrow, at 69 Danum Road, Fulford, uses mostly lino in her exploration of botanical form and its tangled relationship with humanity, delving into surreal folklore and unpacking feminine archetypes.
Photographer Luke Downing’s series of film poetry, at 82 Ambrose Street, York, explores memory, longing and nostalgia in a combination of 8mm footage, original music and spoken word.
Emma James, at 39 Copmathorpe Lane, Bishopthorpe, paints big skies, wild remote spaces and abandoned shelters in acrylics and inks, in response to the Yorkshire landscape and stories of people who lived there. Photographer Scott Dunwoodie, at The Homestead, Moor Lane, Bishopthorpe, creates his architectural and still-life prints using a hybrid of digital and traditional darkroom techniques.
Parkington Hatter, at 61 Sutherland Street, South Bank, makes freehand digital drawings, each containing a surprise for the eagle-eyed. Printmaker Stephen Bottrill, at 8 Middlethorpe Drive, favours etching, photo etching, linocut and serigraphy for his small and large images of current and historical political observations prompted by urban art. Intuitive mixed-media artist Lenka Pavuk, at 13 Vincent Way, uses a variety of materials and media, with the essential element of epoxy (resins) in her imaginative works.
Duncan McEvoy, of 22 Swinerton Avenue, photographs the working railway, frequently abroad, looking east, always hunting for anachronisms, seeking out industrial settings, people and place and everyday sights, “because the present moves constantly to the past,” he says. Leo Corey, at 27 Boroughbridge Road, explores Cuban identity in his paintings, using the human figure and its body language to connect the public with his culture and heritage.
Printmaker Bridget Hunt, at 5 Malvern Avenue, focuses on colour, form and texture in her abstract and representational prints of landscapes, still life, plants and animals. At the same location, Patricia Ann Ruddle combines printmaking and photography, fascinated by the Yorkshire coast’s human and organic aspects.
Watercolour painter Dianne Turner, at 19 Wetherby Road, Acomb, layers translucent colours in her atmospheric pieces inspired by architecture and nature. Digital printmaker Peijun Cao, at 60 Jute Road, creates surreal images from photographs using clouds, eyes and dandelions to produce striking images.
Textile artist Jo Yeates, at South Bank Studios, Southlands Methodist Church, Bishopthorpe Road, employs stitching, tearing, fraying and layering in her seascapes, landscapes and abstract pies, working with paper, fabric, paint and stitch, often using reclaimed and repurposed materials.
Among students showcasing their work are Harriet Fleetham, at South Cottage Workshop, Shipton Road, who combines York’s architecture and street names in her twist on traditional handmade books, and mixed-media artist Emma Yeoman, exhibiting her intricate display of fauna and flora in sculpture and on canvas in the grounds of York St John University, Lord Mayor’s Walk
Faith Noblet, at Phoenix Court, York St John, “challenges the inconspicuousness of the material matter of a photograph” through her analogue photography, realised by manipulation, distortion and deception of the image. Rebecca Mihill, at 13 Nunthorpe Grove, plays with line, symmetry and curves in her contemporary jewellery made from recycled silver.
Returning for the 2023 York Open Studios are: Chiu-I Wu; Frances G Brock; John Hollington; Lesley Birch; Gerard Hobson; Steve Williams; David Campbell; Jacqueline James; Sarah Raphael Balme; Emily Harper-Gustafson; Freya Horsley; Sarah K Jackson; Evie Leach; Ric Liptrot, Jess Mahy, Katrina Mansfield and Lesley Shaw.
So too will be: Ealish Wilson; Greg Winrow; Boxxhead; Robert Burton; Jo Walton; Charmian Ottaway; Lesley Williams; Poppy Burr; Anna Cook; Fiona Lane; Becki Harper; Anna-Marie Magson; Philip Magson; Ann Sotheran; Jo Ruth; Sarah King; Catherine Boyne-Whitelegg; Mo Burrows; Emma Frost; Richard Whitelegg; Cathy Needham, Rukshana Afia and Emma Whiting.
Returning too are: Sally Clarke; Adrienne French; Dylan Connor; Peter Park; Anna Vialle; Rosie Bramley; Liz Foster; Michelle Galloway; Kate Petitt; Reg Walker; Emma Welsh; Judith Glover; Tim Pearce; Carrie Lyall; Linda Harvey; Jane Duke, Malcolm Ludvigsen; Cathy Denford; Chrissie Dell; Amy Stubbs; Emily Stubbs; Ruth Beloe; Milena Dragic and Marc Godfrey-Murphy (MarcoLooks).
Playing their part too will be: Laetitia Newcombe; Phil Reynolds; Claire Castle; Penny Phillips; Pamela Thorby; Elliot Harrison (York360); Meredith Andrea; Lincoln Lightfoot; Carol Douglas; Kay Dower; Claire Morris; Kate Buckley; Colin Black; Carolyn Coles; Laura Duval; Nicola Lee; Donna Maria Taylor; Caroline Utterson; Karen Winship and Amanda Allmark.
Add to that list: Mick Leach; Sharon McDonagh; Jill Tattersall; Marie Murphy; Kate Semple; Lauren Terry; Marcus Jacka; Ruth King; Mark Hearld; Joanna Wakefield; Jo Bagshaw; Lucy McElroy; Simon Palmour; Ben Arnup; Toni Mayner; Emma Whitelock, Richard Frost; Constance Isobel; Jacqueline Warrington; Phil Bixby and Caroline Lewis.
Step forward too: Peter Donohue; Angela Anning; Lucie Wake; Anthea Peters; Derek Gauld; Pennie Lordan; Joanna Lisowiec; Nick Kobyluch; Michelle Hughes; Ted Schofield; Adele Karmazyn; Jane Dignum; Mark Druery; Ruth Claydon; Jane Atkin; Fran Brammer and Jo Rodwell.
Visit the website, at www.yorkopenstudios.co.uk for full details of all the artists, makers and locations and to access the York Open Studios interactive map. Alternatively, this year’s free printed directory can be picked up at tourist hubs and artist locations throughout York city centre and the wider city region.