Collective Matter is an outreach art group, initiated by Eva Masterman, Mary O’Malley and Katie Spragg. Brought together during their time at the Royal College of Art on the Ceramics and Glass MA, they aim to use clay as a primary vehicle for critical engagement, cross-disciplinary practice, and creative communication and experimentation.
Enabled by the Nine Elms Vauxhall Partnership as part of Tate Exchange, Beaconsfield Gallery Vauxhall, Gasworks and Pump House Gallery jointly commissioned Collective Matter to work with local young people through Material Action: a residency with all three galleries. Through a series of creative workshops - ranging from practical clay activities, storytelling, guided walks and discussion groups - Collective Matter will be collaborating with local young people, to share stories and experiences of their local environment.
The focus on clay as a facilitator of exchange and creativity comes from its inherent qualities; its immediacy and tactility. Its transitional nature is the perfect metaphor for the evolving heritage of the area. Clay is an integral part of Vauxhall’s past and future; it was once home to Royal Doulton and clay (brick) is the main building block of both the area’s current transformation and the existing buildings. It is the ground that we walk on and is a material that constantly changes state, from raw to fired, from mud to cherished heirloom.
Collective Matter ran a series of workshops that explore these ideas at the three partner galleries throughout December 2016 – March 2017.