The Muir Trust Residency


The Muir Trust was founded in 1997 by local artist Jane Muir, in memory of her husband, Alastair. It provides an endowment for a short residency programme to support established artists in the field of visual and applied arts as Artist in Residence at Bucks County Museum on a biennial basis.

In practical terms the purpose of the residency is to widen the artistic experience and deepen the understanding of the general public, local artists and students through direct contact with an established working artist. It also provides the opportunity for an artist with a developed style to experiment and take their work in new directions.

The Residency is followed by a selling exhibition of work at the museum.

The Residency is administered by the Curator of Art at Bucks County Museum.

The 12th Muir Trust Residency

The Muir Trust is delighted to announce that the 12th artist in residence will be Katie Surridge, a mixed media artist specialising in metal casting.

The Residency will take place at the museum from 18 September – 18 October 2019 and the Residency exhibition will open on 9 November 2019.

Katie’s Open Studio Days are :

Fri 20 Sept, Sat 21 Sept, Tues 24 Sept, Wed 25 Sept, Thu 26 Sept, Fri 27 Sept, Thu 10 Oct, Fri 11 Oct, Thu 17 Oct, Fri 18 Oct.

Katie gave a demonstration of aluminium casting on her mobile foundry on Sat 28 Sept in the museum garden.

The actual pour is very quick and has been captured on video https://youtube/Katie Surridge


Katie has set up a fascinating blog detailing her work and thoughts around this residency.

Other events:

Katie gave a workshop for adults on carving and casting personal pilgrim badges on Sat 12 October.

Katie will give a talk about her career, inspirations and this residency on Thu 7 November.

See our events page for more information and booking details for these activities.

Background to this Residency:

Applications were invited from established studio artists wishing to develop their creative practice by working with the Bucks County Museum collections. The artist selects items from the collections in store and responds to them through their own medium to create new readings and interpretations.

After a visit to the museum and the resource centre, Katie tells us :

‘My starting point for the work I will be making on this residency is the Archaeology department. I studied archaeology for a few months before changing my degree to art and so I have always had a deep interest in the subject. I’m looking forwards to working with the museum and developing my own take on this unique collection.

I will start my investigations with the ways in which some archaeological items in the museum are stored. Each precious piece has its own specially labelled and numbered container, where the object is protected and held secure in Plastezote , a type of storage foam. I am interested in the abstracted shapes cut into this foam to support the items and will be using these negative spaces to inspire a new series of castings and drawings.

I plan to set up a small scale foundry in the museum garden and I will be casting new relics based on the shapes I find in the plastezote, with a new categorisation system set up to record the items which I use in the commission. I will also be developing interactive ways in which visitors to the museum can then dig up these items themselves, and experience finding hidden items.’

Katie’s ideas have developed further prior to the residency and she has selected 45 archaeological finds to use in her project. She plans to work in different scales, to amalgamate pieces into new forms and to work in several materials. She is passionate about involving our visitors in the artistic process and sharing the drama of casting with molten metal.


Katie Louise Surridge (1985), was born and raised in London. She studied for her art foundation at Chelsea school of Art and her BA at the Slade, UCL (2010.) Upon graduation she was selected as one of four finalists in the Saatchi’s New Sensations competition, and later as a Royal British Sculpture Society, bursary winner (2011).

In 2013 she spent four months in China as Swatch Watches artist in residence, where she started Little Victories gallery, which operated from a converted waste recycling bicycle. This gallery allowed artists to display what they want, where they want, an interesting concept in a society where art is still heavily censored. This has now been remade in London.

Other residencies include ‘The Observatory’ in Lymington where she worked with locally collected coloured sand to create work which responded to the Victorian fad of sand art in bottles. During another residency at Gerfail Yr Ynys a forge in North Wales, she researched local folklore and stories which inspired large scale hand forged iron work. In January 2019 she went to the Scottish sculpture workshop for a month long residency to develop ceremonial drinking bronzes and sculptural furnaces.

Recent commissions include the B-side arts festival where she ran a mobile bronze foundry casting live for an audience and a permanent piece of public art for an Iron Age hill fort in the New Forest.

In 2016 Katie finished three years training as a blacksmith in Hereford at the National School of blacksmithing. Most recently she received a bursary from the Winston Churchill Memorial Trust allowing her to research smelting her own iron from ore. The trip which started in Ireland and moved on to Japan is a major new area of exploration and will culminate in a project with the British council .

After the Muir Trust Residency she plans to take up her place for an MA at Goldsmith’s College of Art.

For more information about the Muir Trust go to