Alice Clough 2019-20

Creative practice informed by archeology and anthropology 

In 2019, Alice Clough took up a residency as Arts Lab’s ‘summer experimenter’ to connect with local artists and the community and to develop her art practice. ‘This is a wonderful opportunity for me to explore social and community engagement with my work and to have space to experiment and share what I am doing. Arts Lab is a fantastic project that I hope to support through my work here.’

Alice has a background in archaeology and anthropology, which inform her current practice as a maker. Her work explores how materials and objects become entangled with social and cultural events, with an interest in articulating origin stories and excavating meaning. During her residency, Alice developed ceramic hand-building techniques for a series of vessels responding to the human body. This then led to an ongoing project ‘exploring the evolution and impact of writing on human culture.’ In Spring 2020, she presented this project at Arts Lab to the general public in the form of a pop-up exhibition called Word-Body.

‘Here, I was able to engage with the public by offering hands on activities using clay, text, and mark-making, as well as an informal talk and discussion. Visitors seemed to connect strongly with the talk, and we had an animated and thoughtful discussion around themes of connection/disconnection, education, order, feminism, and the sensing body inhabiting an animate world. Following the discussion there was time for large-scale mark making in response to one of the installations; the installation itself was very pristine and controlled, and provoked some very messy, free and black expressions alongside others that were repetitive, precise or almost mathematical. One visitor commented on how grateful they were for the permission to simply play with the materials available.’

‘The residency and the final exhibition provided a great opportunity to experiment and explore how audiences engage with my work. Going forward, I would like to explore more large scale installations, as well as workshop formats to support discussion and creative experimentation.’

Alice Clough, Devon

For more about Alice, see her website ->

First 2 images © Alice Clough


Artist, Community, Experiments, Learning