Beyond the Vessel: Narratives in Contemporary European Ceramics


22 February – 12 April 2020

A major exhibition of international contemporary sculpture at Messums Wiltshire will highlight a new school of European artists using clay to comment on contemporary issues from pollution to war. The astonishing range of techniques used to create the works are powerful reminders of the enduring importance of the handmade in art as well as the stories that underpin European identity. From Odysseus to Odin, ancient myths and folk tales have always been a prompt for artists’ imagination and now, as Europe dissembles, interest in them amongst artists of all genres – but particularly those using clay – is proliferating.

The exhibition which will move to Messums Wiltshire from the Koç Foundation in Istanbul where it has attracted over 40,000 visitors is one of the biggest exhibitions of contemporary ceramics to have been mounted in the last decade in Europe.

The exhibition features works by fourteen artists from nine countries including: Sam Bakewell, Giampaolo Bertozzi and Stefano Dal Monte Casoni, Claire Curneen, Christie Brown, Phoebe Cummings, Bouke de Vries, Kim Simonsson, Jørgen Haugen Sørensen, Carolein Smit, Malene Hartmann Rasmussen and Vivian van Blerk.

Catalogue delivery from end February.