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Claire Morgan, 2012 © Dave Holbrook

Claire Morgan’s fragile hanging installations reflect her interest in natural processes and organic materials. In her works, the young artist (b. 1980 in Belfast, Northern Ireland) engages with the elemental conditions of man in his habitat and reveals the impossibility of grasping the complexity of life and death: “Exploring the physicality of animals, death, and illusions of permanence in the work is my way of trying to come to terms with these things myself.” Elegance and beauty, but also senselessness and horror, are present in her installations and drawings. Simultaneously poetic and vexing, they express the ambivalence of life.
"Being alive can be beautiful and horrific. My practice is the way I explore what that means for me.
I am acutely aware of the physical merging between myself and the world - the constant osmosis that occurs between me and ‘it’, with particles of air, fluids, matter, moving from one to the other, in and out, back and forth, continuously. Every living thing is in this state of constant transition. I am intrigued by those simultaneous senses of spiritual communion and unpalatable intrusion that come about through awareness of our connectedness, and of our vulnerability.
My practice has been focused on how we humans understand and interact with the rest of the natural world, and our unwillingness to acknowledge our absolute lack of autonomy or control. I look at humans as animals, and the complexity of our intellectual dislocation from the landscape that sustains us. We behave as individual entities with fixed identities, but the reality is less clear. The me that I was a few days ago no longer exists.
Labour and repetition have been important tools for me. I discovered that I could use incredibly fragile materials to create the illusion of precise geometric structures. Any event might destroy these structures. As the potential for destruction seems closer, the senses of frailty and futility become more powerful, and there is a particular beauty in that moment. More recently I have started to unpick where these obsessions of mine originate. I am continuously drawn to personal and collective memories of trauma and loss.
I want to reach what is hidden beneath the layers of synthetic contemporary culture, at the heart of our experience, as well as how we try to hide that, or, try to hide from it. At its core, my practice is an exploration of the human condition. It comes from somewhere deeply personal. I believe that if it did not, it would be bound to fail."
Claire Morgan, August 2020
Claire Morgan has had solo exhibitions in Belfast, London and Paris and has taken part in numerous international group exhibitions, including in 2009 at the Palais de Tokyo in Paris and in 2010 at the Museum of Arts and Design in New York. In 2004 she received the Annual Bursary Award from the British Society of Sculptors and the Royal British Society’s Roy Noakes Award, and in 2006 she was awarded the Premio Fondazione Amaldo Pomodoro by the Fondazione Pomodoro in Milan. In 2007 she won the Wooda Arts Award from Cornwall UK and in 2019 the Prix de Dessin 2019 of the Fondation Daniel et Florence Guerlain in France. Claire Morgan lives and works in Newcastle, England. 
Take a tour in the artists' studio in April 2020.

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