Alke Schmidt's work combines beautiful form with thought-provoking subject matter. Painting is often intertwined with the decorative patterns of found fabrics, stitch or print, selected for their historical, cultural or symbolic associations. Fusing the roles of the artist as maker and critical citizen, Alke uses the visually seductive qualities of her works to challenge contemporary social and environmental injustices. Her work also puts those issues in historical context, reflecting Alke's belief that we must engage with the past to understand - and improve - the world today. ​ In her latest projects, Alke has focused on engaging with historical museum collections and heritage sites, highlighting their contemporary relevance. Highlights included solo exhibitions exploring the politics of the global textile industry past and present at the William Morris Gallery (2014/15), the Cromford Mills World Heritage Site (2015), and the People’s History Museum (2017). Alke's latest project is "Wonder and Dread", an Arts Council England-supported solo exhibition at Bradford Industrial Museum (Dec 17- Nov 18) that will further investigate the textile industry, with a particular focus on the Bradford wool trade and how it affected people from around the world. The project will also include a proposal for new site-specific work at Salts Mill, Saltaire. Since completing her MA Fine Art at John Cass School of Art in London, Alke has exhibited widely in solo and group shows in the UK. Her work is in private collections in the UK and abroad as well as in the collections of the Arkwright Society, London's City Lit and Walthamstow's Vestry House Museum. London