Materials of Resistance by Clare Thornton

Plymouth-based artist Clare Thornton to present exhibition of new and existing work at Plymouth Arts Centre

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Plymouth Arts Centre has announced a new exhibition by interdisciplinary artist and educator Clare Thornton. This will be the first solo exhibition in Plymouth for PAC Home associate artist Clare, who has shown her work extensively across the UK and abroad.

Folding and falling

In this exhibition Clare explores her longstanding interest in folding and falling. Previously she worked with these ideas using her own body in performances but in this exhibition, they find new means of expression through ceramics and print.

She has produced a sculptural installation comprising works that adorn Plymouth Arts Centre’s interiors, employing coiled, extruded clay and draped, printed pieces. The exhibition explores time and pressure upon materials teetering on the edge of collapse.

Strong yet flexible in uncertain times

Clare is ‘interested in the performative possibilities of craft’ and draws on her formal training in dance, scenography and literature. Her works refer back to a body seeking to be strong yet flexible in uncertain times.

In this show, Clare has also taken inspiration from two formidable women of the early 20th Century – writer, heiress and political activist Nancy Cunard and Dada artist and poet Baroness Elsa von Loringshoven.

The perfect moment

Plymouth Arts Centre Artistic director Ben Borthwick said:
‘This is the perfect moment to appraise Clare Thornton’s work which has been grounded in the intersections of performance, dance and visual art since the 1990s, and is now focused on malleable materials like clay and textiles.

‘One of the great privileges of being a curator is to work with artists who are neighbours, allowing for informal and ongoing conversations throughout the development of an exhibition.

‘Materials of Resistance will reflect that personal dialogue and the interplay between a survey of existing and new work.’


With thanks to the Elephant Trust, the Artists’ Benevolent Fund and Grants for the Arts, Arts Council England for funding. Thanks also to production partners Plymouth University and Plymouth College of Art.

Materials of Resistance by Clare Thornton is at Plymouth Arts Centre from Friday, December 1 to Saturday, January 20

Clare Thornton@ClareThornton

Plymouth Arts Centre@PlymArtsCentre


(from a press release)



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