IN The Making, a group show by BA contemporary craft students, opens in The Gallery at York College on February 3.

The exhibition showcases the talents of third-year students as they undertake their final year and is of special importance as 2017 marks the 175th anniversary of the York School of Design, one of the first design schools to be set up outside London. York College continues its rich creative heritage in the city.

The eight artists on show, Lydia Munro, Jake Augur, Layla Khoo, Daniel Nyman, Olivia Lawrenson, Dawn Ridsdel, Alex Palmer and Sharon Wilkinson, address contemporary relationships with craft and how craft is perceived today. The decorative, the functional and the thought-provoking are all present; from handmade silver jewellery, ceramic jars and contemporary 3D printed works, through to sculptural works addressing themes of loss and environmental damage.

Art and design technician Dawn Ridsdel says: "In a world which is becoming increasingly homogenised and automated, the simple act of making becomes both a refuge and a necessary means of expression of the original and the unique.

York Press:

Sculpture by Daniel Nyman

"The exhibition title, In The Making, reflects how we, as learners, are being formed into the artists of tomorrow, and how the things we make shape us and the world around us as much as we shape them."

Contemporary design artist Lydia Munro produces her handmade jewellery by experimenting with materials and techniques, attempting to push them to their limits. "My work is a story of exploration into identity, developed from research into narcissism," she says. "I'm fascinated with how people perceive themselves and others. This is shown through adaptations of the narcissus flower, probing the audience to admire and question how my work is formed."

Jake Augur uses both new and old technology to produce vessels made from 3D printing material, cast concrete and clay. Utilising computer-aided design to design and refine his work, he has developed 3D printed moulds and other tools to create vessels from different materials and to explore different shapes that would be difficult or impossible to make using traditional methods.

York Press:

3D printing by Jake Augur

Layla Khoo is drawn to ceramic art for the tactility and versatility that clay presents. She works primarily in mould-making and slip-casting, exploring how individuality can be brought to life by making in multiples. "I create installation pieces as an observation and response to emotional, societal and political issues, often drawn from personal experiences," she says.

Sculptor Daniel Nyman deals with what is material and tangible. "My ultimate goal is to give life to my creations: a semblance of life to something that is not alive," he says.

Jeweller Olivia Lawrenson applies innovative techniques and processes to her work, using geometric shapes to create contemporary jewellery. She has an interest in tessellation and simple geometric forms and combines 3D printing with traditional casting methods to produce pieces with complex arrangements of shapes. Introducing colour into her designs is her latest progression.

York Press:

Ceramics by Layla Khoo

Dawn Ridsdel loves hand-building with clay and her work reflects her interest in the use of colour and the way it can affect us and how we perceive it. "Different people can see different shades and intensities of colour and colours can appear to change depending on those around them," she says. "Sometimes colour can be so vivid that it can even appear to move."

Inspired by the work of Sonia Delaunay, Dawn explores these anomalies with a playful application of surface decoration using underglazes and slips.

Mixed-media artist Alex Palmer focuses on metal work that reveals the influence of steampunk on his pieces. "I'm interested in exploring the clashes and contrasts between the old and the new, and investigating the ageing process of materials through experiments with surface texture," he says.

Sharon Wilkinson's artistic creativity mirrors her own life journey, responding to the natural environment and the impact of man on it. "My work is inspired by the cliffs and bays of North Yorkshire’s Jurassic coastline, where many secrets of the landscape’s history are laid bare; ancient forms and textures, the remains of life through millions of years exposed in rocks hidden beneath the Earth’s surface," she says.

"Replicating the dynamic forces of nature using porcelain and paper clay, I seek to re-create the thrill of discovery of hidden forms and textures revealed by the fossilised remains of ancient life."

In The Making runs in The Gallery, York College, Sim Balk Lane, Bishopthorpe, York, from February 3 to 9, 9am to 5pm, with a preview evening on February 3 from 6pm to 8pm. For more information on the BA contemporary craft course, visit