Along with our partners the Society of Antiquaries of London, we are thrilled to introduce ceramicist Alison Proctor as the Maker in Residence for 2023 at Kelmscott Manor. This historic residence, once the cherished home of acclaimed writer, designer-craftsman, conservationist, and revolutionary socialist William Morris, will be the backdrop for Alison’s residency from June to October 2023.
Alison’s appointment as the 2023 Maker in Residence at Kelmscott Manor promises to bring a fresh perspective and enrich the artistic legacy of this historic site. Audiences can look forward to engaging with her exceptional craftsmanship and sharing in her enthusiasm for the interplay between nature and art. Visitors to the Manor will be able to experience demonstrations and workshops led by Alison and participate in the creation of a communal artwork as part of the residency.
Through this unique partnership, Alison will have the opportunity to honour Morris’s advocacy of craftsmanship and the handmade while contributing to his enduring legacy through active participation in Kelmscott Manor’s engaging public programmes. By prioritising inclusivity and accessibility, the revitalized Kelmscot Manor aims to fulfil Morris’s vision of art, education, and freedom for all.
Martin Millet, President of the Society of Antiquaries of London, said:
“I am excited by the prospect of our first Maker in Residence at Kelmscott Manor and delighted that the Society is working in partnership with Heritage Crafts, an organisation that champions the handmade and shares in so many of our own values and those of William Morris.”
Alison Proctor, 2023 Maker in Residence, said:
“I am very much looking forward to immersing myself in the history and special setting of Kelmscott Manor. I’m excited to use the opportunity to explore new work and share my passion for craft and nature in a place that celebrates both.”
Daniel Carpenter, Director of Heritage Crafts, said:
“The legacy of William Morris is inescapable in the crafts world even in the 21st century, including influencing the founding of Heritage Crafts in 2009. We are delighted therefore to be partnering with the Society of Antiquaries of London on this wonderful Maker in Residence opportunity at Kelmscott Manor. Alison is a sublime maker in the Morrisian tradition of thoughtful observation and attendance to both the natural and human worlds, and will be a valuable addition to Kelmscott over the coming months.”
Alison Proctor’s appointment as the Maker in Residence is made possible as part of the Society’s NHLF-funded £6 million ‘Kelmscott and Morris: Past, Present and Future’ project.
Alison Proctor is a ceramicist based in Kent whose predominantly sculptural work is inspired by the natural world. Her sculptures, often made using red and white earthenware clay, reflect a deep connection to her surroundings. Additionally, Alison has been experimenting with sea clay sourced from nature and reclaimed bone china, expanding the range of her artistic endeavours. Her recent work focuses on the tradition of casting sprig molds directly from plants and leaves, capturing their intricate beauty in delicate detail.
About Society of Antiquaries of London
The Society of Antiquaries of London is Britain’s oldest learned society concerned with the study of the material remains of the past. Founded in 1707, our Royal Charter of 1751 defines our objectives as ‘the encouragement, advancement and furtherance of the study and knowledge of antiquities and history of this and other countries’. We deliver our charitable objectives through activities at two sites – Burlington House, London and Kelmscot Manor, Oxfordshire. Kelmscot Manor is an internationally important site with an assemblage of 17th to 19th century listed buildings. The house contains an exceptional collection of historic furnishings and works of art, many designed or created by William Morris (1834-96), members of his family and their creative associates.