Katharine Harris

During the winter months of 2019, we took a closer look at this seasonally appropriate chilly painting, and found out about the artist's family connection to the Museum and Reading University. [Highlighted: Nov 2019]

The Blue Shadow
by Katharine Harris (1900–1984)

Oil on canvas
Date about: 1963
78 x 68cm

RGA member: 1953–1979
Was on the RGA Council 1960–63

Reading Museum Accession Number
REDMG : 1963.122.1

This work was exhibited at the Reading Guild of Artists Thirty-third Annual Exhibition, Municipal Art Gallery Reading May 4th – May 25th 1963.

Katharine Harris (sometimes seen incorrectly spelt Kathleen and known as Kay) was a member of the Reading Guild of Artists 1953–1979 serving on the RGA Council for 1960–1963.

She initially worked in watercolour but the majority of her work was in oil of botanical subjects, rural scenes and landscapes.

Katharine was married to Professor Thomas Harris, after whom the Harris Garden of Reading University was named. They lived in Elm Road Reading and later in Farley Hill, and for a year during this time she lived in Ghana West Africa, 1958.

Her sister was the mother of Alan Caiger-Smith whose modern ceramics produced at the Aldermaston Pottery, a selection of which can be seen in the Atrium Gallery, Reading Museum. Caiger-Smith was also a member of the RGA 1948–1982 (joining at a young age) and continued to support the RGA by hosting Summer Painting Days in his garden.


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