Will Martin

Taxonomy, 2015

“Shifting between fictional stories, personal memories and historical fact, William Martin weaves disparate narratives into a complex relationship. Through an associative approach he combines strands from history, archeology and philosophy to address subjects ranging from the traditions associated with sailing culture, to the archeological and colonial histories of the Western world.

Martin’s practice is an expanded ceramic practice with a social twist. Enjoying the tension between the functional heritage of pottery and its place in his practice, he constantly re-assesses the purpose of the objects he makes. The audience’s interaction with his ceramics remains important but the functional relationship is extended to a social one as Martin invents bespoke scenarios and occasions in which to play out narratives and challenge his audience to engage.

Breaking down the relationships between subjects and the traditional structures of art practices is for Martin a method of social critique. His practice plays out through a fascination with the Enlightenment period since it marks the origin of many of the institutions and systems that mould our lives today. For the summer exhibition Martin invites us into a richly constructed world with themes and storylines developed in a fictional text that play out across ceramic objects and fictional artifacts. Replaying historical narratives, his ceramics attempt to make sense of contemporary society and the way in which we approach life today.”

Kate Neave

Currator, Florence Trust

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Taxonomy Installation Detail, Mixed Media, Dimensions Variable

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