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Gallery II

Kate Morrell | Pots before words | 10 April - 22 May 2014


Image: Pots before words, 2014, courtesy of the artist Kate Morrell

Pots before words was an exhibition of new works by Kate Morrell, commissioned by Gallery II. The work engaged with the life and work of British writer and archaeologist Jacquetta Hawkes, and was the result of a period of research within the Jacquetta Hawkes Archive at the University of Bradford. This research was centred on Hawkes' study of prehistory, pottery and a humanistic approach to Archaeology.

Pots before words was a series of new object-based works and drawings, examining the issues which arise when interpreting or translating from an incomplete or inaccurate record. A display of fragmented objects were presented as part of an irretrievable whole - a communication system abstracted and indecipherable in the present day. Pots before words explored the tensions between the subjective and objective in the interpretation and display of archaeological evidence. Alongside a series of drawings a stone apparatus was presented, which functions as a portable, table-top display. The granite platform will tour various archives and collections in order to play host to a series of female archivists, archaeologists, geologists and the chosen artefacts of their profession. The commission included a new publication, with material reproduced from the Jacquetta Hawkes Archive. To purchase this publication please click here.

Kate Morrell employs drawing, sculpture, publications and archival research to create work centred around forgotten histories and instances of amateur and inaccurate interpretations of historical material. Her interests in material culture and heritage have led her to engage with disciplines outside of the traditional remits of the arts, including archaeology and geology. The multi-disciplinary nature of her practice has engaged with and made work for, a variety of exhibition contexts. Projects have been realised at the Centre for Contemporary Arts, Glasgow, English Heritage's Landguard Fort, Suffolk and The Armitt Museum & Library, Cumbria. Kate Morrell's most recent book work (Alpine Spoilers) was acquired by the Tate Gallery. Work produced for this commission has been shortlisted for the Jerwood Drawing Prize 2014

With thanks to Special Collections, University of Bradford

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