Using the arts to revitalise our relationship with a resource we take for granted
Soil Culture is a collaboration between CCANW and Falmouth University 2013-17 which presents a programme of exhibitions and activities informed by academic research but intended to engage with both specialist and non-specialist audiences.
This display is of work by 3 artists who have worked in soil-related areas for several years and is intended to give a taste of the project.
Peter Ward's contemporary environmental art practice explores our relationship with the natural world through painting, installation, workshops, expeditions, performance and film. He has been researching earth pigments in North Devon - their geology, history and uses - since 2008. The pieces on show graphically represent a small but significant sample of the colours evident in the rocks and soils of North Devon, including the historically mined pigment Bideford Black and White Ball Clay from the still quarried Meeth clay pits.
Sandra Masterson's series Church Yews and Oak is part of a large body of work produced during a one year residencies based in the Abberley and Malvern Hills Geopark. The trees have been shaped by human interaction for over a hundred years. They mark the way for the dead and stand as guard and protector. The images are formed from the carbonised wood mixed with oil floated onto the paper, to create an image that is neither solid nor transparent, a remembrance of a thing no longer there, captured in time and reduced to a most basic and universal element.
Daro Montag's set of images portrays the activities of soil microorganisms. To make the work, a one metre vertical strip of soil is dug up and placed on a pre-processed roll of film. Over the next few days the microbes in the soil tunnel through the coloured layers of gelatin leaving a trace of their existence. Once the film is removed from the soil, small sections are photographed. Each image, from a sample only a few millimetres in diameter, acts as a record of the microscopic living events in the soil.
Enquiries and sales, contact Clive Adams, Director
More information on the Soil Culture programme (pdf)
We are now based in the Innovation Centre on the University of Exeter campus.
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Centre for Contemporary Art and the Natural World c.i.c.
Registered in England 4141506.
Directors: Clive Adams, Daro Montag
Staff: Gemma Baal, manager, Sally Lai, residency coordinator (freelance)
Advisory Panel: Tristram Besterman, chair, Phil Collins, Charlotte Rathbone, Jem Southam, Peter Young, Rick Bond, Dave Pritchard, Emma Rothwell, Henrietta Vercoe, William Lana
CCANW is pleased to acknowledge support for its 2013-14 development programme from Arts Council England, Devon County Council and The University of Exeter