Carolyn Marr

Find, make

Carolyn aims to make objects that arrest attention and invite handling. She is interested in the multisensory aspects involved in making and in experiencing art. Experimenting with form has been a major strand of her work for some time - she likes to take a basic shape and see where she can go with it. As well as variations of form, her current preoccupations include simplicity and complexity, the animation of objects and the dynamics that may arise between groups of objects. She often creates series or accumulations of related objects, occasionally adding elements of sound and film. There is something self-contained about her approach, where the making process and the material become what the work is about.

Often, found materials gathered on walks in the North Pennines and Lake District fells, add a site-specific dimension and this element of her work is a focus for 'Find, make' at Gallery 57.  Here, Carolyn has put together a collection of hold-in-the-hand sculptures that contain sand or grit from rivers and coasts in Cumbria, Northumberland, Scotland and further afield.  She is interested in seeing how different minerals behave when, combined with clay, they are subjected to extreme heat in the kiln.  Some bead out of the clay, others melt and spread, and others still erupt and form mini-craters on the surface.  For Carolyn, this act of ‘material diversion’ (taking small amounts of sand or grit from its current location and containing it in clay) prompts thoughts about the how these grains of matter originated, and where – after their ‘suspension’ in her sculptures – they will end up.  The ‘continuous’ form chosen to hold these materials refers both to the continuous plane of the basic form used in many of pieces as well as to this element of continuing material journeys. 

Based in Brampton, Northeast Cumbria, Carolyn grew up on the Isle of Wight. She originally studied modern languages and worked in the fields of education and environmental justice, gaining experience in Europe and Asia and travelling widely further afield before focusing on developing her art practice. She is currently studying for a masters in Art and Archaeology.

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