Ragley Gallery and Studios

Ragley Gallery and studios is now closed at its location at Ragley Hall.

Very sadly our lease has not been renewed for 2015, therefore the Gallery and the Studios will close at Ragley at the end of 2014. We are aiming to continue will what we have created and hope to build on our achievements in a new location, consequently our gallery and studios require a new home. I will of course keep you updated with more information about where our new location will be as soon as it becomes available.

I would like to take this opportunity to thank all of the artists, in particular the fantastic group of studio artists that have worked so hard and supported all of the exhibitions and many numerous events that have taken place over the last 2 years.  We really were beginning to build something very special here, an inclusive community of artists who all gave something unique through their association with our studios. It is undeniable that our surroundings were quite exceptional but the fundamental reason for our success is due to the people involved.

I have felt extremely lucky to have worked with so many talented and supportive artists and enjoyed sharing all of the exhibitions, open studios, workshops, work experiences, talks and presentations with all of the visitors that have come along to enjoy them and support us.

A very big thank you to all of you and I look forward to inviting you to our next event announcing our new location.

With my very best wishes


Harris Visual Arts was established by Dawn Harris and is based in Ragley Gallery and Studios at Ragley Hall. Operating as a community for artists to develop their practices our aim is to provide affordable artist and gallery spaces to graduates, early career and established artists from the surrounding communities. Currently there are few viable options available to graduating students and artists wishing to develop their practice within this area. Often ignored in terms of producing artistic talent, the West Midlands represents a particular challenge both in terms of the commercial arts scene and artists who wish to sustain their practices in this region after graduating. Harris Visual Arts at Ragley Hall is pushing forward to develop an arts market and keep artists in the region. The unique position of the Gallery and Studio, in a site with an audience interested in heritage and culture, will benefit emerging artists by highlighting quality emerging talent and offering a crucial bridge between training and a professional career. This is a positive step; as London continues to draw in talent from across the UK (and the world) developing off–centre scenes offers an alternative view and a chance for artists to shape their own community.

Many arts organisations work in partnership with a variety of host venues, whether locally loved destinations, tourism, heritage sites or historic gardens with an established visitor base. This encourages audience participation,  creates new audiences and cross-fertilisation between the contemporary arts and heritage sectors. All of this we aim to achieve. But what is critically different is our provision of a permanent gallery and studios within an established site where a sense of place and reputation can contribute to the growth and development of the Arts. This will also provide opportunities for education and outreach programmes which are at the heart of our activity; encouraging participation, discussion and reflection about contemporary art.

Dawn Harris
Director of Ragley Gallery and Studios, Ragley Hall, Alcester,
Warwickshire B49 5NJ.

Macmillan Ragley Gallery and Studios will be supporting Macmillan Cancer Support throughout our events in 2014.


Dawn Harris – Artist in Residence, Ragley Hall.


Dawn Harris (right), Artist in Residence, Ragley Hall

Ragley is delighted to introduce to you Dawn Harris, our Artist in Residence. Running from Easter to October 2014 Dawn will be based in the Ragley Gallery & Studio within our Grade I listed stables and will use the residency for reflection, research, presentation and production of work that responds to the Ragley environment. Dawn’s residency will enable her to explore her practice within a different community; meeting new people, using new materials and experiencing life in a new location. Art residencies aim to emphasize the importance of meaningful and multi-layered cultural exchange.

‘I am delighted to continue with the artist residency at Ragley and I look forward to developing the residency entitled Spirit of Place.

Spirit of Place aims to investigate the tangible physical aspects of a place, (monuments, boundaries, rivers, woods, architectural style, pathways, views and so on); to the invisible weave of culture (stories, art, memories, beliefs, histories etc.) and the presence of people. The residency will provide an opening for visitors, local schools, universities and community groups to explore contemporary art through discussion, workshops and exhibitions within this valued heritage site.

Ragley Gallery will be running an Open Art Competition entitled Spirit of Place. The competition is open to artists working with physical media: objects, drawings, painting, prints, textile & sculpture.
Competition Open for Entry: 1st May – 20th July.   
Winners Exhibition: 17th August – 7th September.

Dawn Harris: Artists Statement
Time is integral to my work both in terms of the time of making and time as content. My work comments and reflects on the passage of time and the role memory plays in the construction of identity and the coincidence of the past in the present. The work is an on-going process of repetition and refinement, finding meaning and significance in the performance and repeat performance of a process, both within the drawing process and the ritual of making.

As the process settles the drawing flows from a memory of the previous drawing so each drawing is executed with a slightly different expression from the last. The variable factor of my subjectivity and the act of recollection changes the relationship with the memory and each time an event is revisited it is subsequently directed by the past. The drawings represent the displacement of the past into the present, time and identity become malleable, uncertain and elastic.

Personal web site: www.dawnlharris.com