Clare Carter: Maternal Stratum

31 May 2023 - 15 July 2023

Maternal Stratum demonstrates a journey of motherhood as told through the experiences artist Clare Carter has endured. An often central point of intercept in Carter’s practice, this exhibition relates humans to the natural world. Since becoming a mother seven years ago, the artists’ focus has shifted towards exploring landscapes of the Anthropocene from the position of motherhood. How this epoch of time – defined by the human becoming a geological force – has shaped the environment of motherhood, and how the practice of mothering embeds itself the landscape, are some of the questions that emerge when responding to materials, photography, and video.

Clare Carter is an artist and songwriter from West Yorkshire, working primarily with print, film, sound and installation.

Carter was recently awarded an Arts Council England grant (Developing Your Creative Practice) to research alternative printmaking processes that may allow her to work towards an ecologically engaged practice. Throughout this research, Carter has been largely drawn to photography and its endless opportunities to play with light and surface, time and place, harnessing an alchemy of light-processing plants and materials found deep in the ground where she lives. Along with making inks from plants, excavating clay from reservoirs, coal and ochre from local mines, she has tried to confront the ubiquitous plastic spaces from the inescapable toxic, consumerist culture her children are exposed to within their environment.

Carter sees herself engaged in a kind of entangled practice with the landscape in which she dwells; a place of historical significance pertaining to the industrial revolution and subsequent ecological crisis. By attempting to reconnect with this landscape of the Anthropocene, illuminating the sense of loss she experiences with her children, her work hopes to open up a dialogue about, what the Nigerian poet and writer Bayo Akomolafe describes as, becoming a ‘citizen of grief’ in the world.

This exhibition will be shown in our Learning Space. We recommend getting in touch ahead of your visit as this space is bookable for private meetings, events, and workshops. 

Images courtesy the artist.