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Galerie Les filles du Calvaire

Kate
MccGwire

More infos
VISCERA, 2018, Mixed media with pheasant feathers in antique cabinet, 122 x 180 x 70 cm

VISCERA, 2018, Mixed media with pheasant feathers in antique cabinet, 122 x 180 x 70 cm

VISCERA, 2018, Mixed media with pheasant feathers in antique cabinet, 122 x 180 x 70 cmVISCERA, 2018, Mixed media with pheasant feathers in antique cabinet, 122 x 180 x 70 cmDRIFT, 2018, Mixed media with white pigeon feathers  300 x 100 x 20 cmSASSE/SLUICE, 2018 Mixed media with pigeon feathers 393 x 215 x 60cm SASSE/SLUICE, 2018 Mixed media with pigeon feathers 393 x 215 x 60cm GYRUS, 2019 Cock pheasant feathers in oak cabinet with table base 160 x 100 x 60cmCACHE, 2011 Mixed media with pigeon tail feathers in antique metal trunk 21 x 48 x 28cm (44cm when open)

Kate MccGwire

Born in 1964

Lives and works in London

Kate MccGwire is a London-based artist who spent her childhood growing up on the Norfolk Broads. MccGwire’s early memories of this distinct landscape, dominated by its wetlands, serpentine waterways and the wildlife that lives along the region’s waters, form the foundations of her practice, which is inspired by the cycles, patterns and dualities of nature.

Taking feathers as her primary medium, Kate MccGwire goes through labour-intensive processes of collecting, sorting and cleaning her materials to create muscular, writhing forms reminiscent of Classical sculpture and creatures from mythology. These abject structures explore dualities of aesthetics, being simultaneously seductive and repulsive; form, being simultaneously organic and abstract; and movement, appearing fluid yet being static. Through her practice, MccGwire celebrates feathers, which are commonly shed or discarded, as the medium through which she articulates enigmatic anatomies that explore physical and introspective space.

The artist’s hybrid, ’boundary creatures’ (as termed by Dr. Catriona McAra) often fill their framing devices and appear to writhe within them. On this, MccGwire has said, ‘I am interested in the interplay of opposites which runs like a leitmotif through everything I do. It is as if the work needs that tension to create its own internal equilibrium; it is an expression for me of the duality I see all around me and the materials I choose need to be able to physically embody this.’

Titled ‘Retch’, ‘Gag’, ‘Heave’, ‘Smother’ and ‘Fuse’, Kate MccGwire’s sculptural installations often refer to the feminine grotesque. Resembling bodily functions, the works often spill out of domestic architecture : stoves, fireplaces and hearths, as though spellbound.

On the process of creation, Kate MccGwire has described her distinct feathering process as compelling and hypnotic : ‘I lose myself in it for hours, working instinctually – you can’t plan how to lay the feathers out, nor can you really teach someone. Each feather contributes to the overall patterning of a piece, and it is this implicit sense of movement in the shifting colours and gentle curve of each filament that brings the work to life. This final stage draws on the rituals of craft, on the connection between hand and eye and the natural serendipity that happens when you become fully immersed in giving life to an idea.’

Lure

Lure

Kate MccGwire

2013

Foreword by Judith Collins

‘In contrast to her site-specific sculptures, which respond to the display conditions they are given, MccGwire in 2008 began a series of smaller feather sculptures encased in antique vitrines. This allows her to interrogate museum and gallery display methods, since vitrines are the normal mode of presentation for scientific and natural history museum collections. Vex (2008) was the first of these, made with pigeon feathers. A contorted, feathered form is set in a museum-like glass and wood cabinet that seems slightly too small for it. The viewer approaches with a sense of anxiety, as though stepping too close will cause the apparently headless creature to rear up and break free of its bondage. Something ancient and extinct seems to have the power to come alive.’

All Visual Arts

  • Undertow, les créations fantasmagoriques de Kate MccGwire exposées à la Galerie des Filles du Calvaire

    Arts in the City | Février 2022

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  • Poids plume Kate MccGwire

    Le Figaro | Mars 2021

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  • In Kate MccGwire’s latest work, a swell of bird feathers floods a Victorian dovecote

    by Nurit Chinn Wallpaper* | 28 June 2018

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  • Cultural pursuits at the crillon

    The Telegraph, 2017

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  • Kate MccGwire's Scissure to open in Paris

    ArtOnly | Septembre 2016

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  • Sculpting Nature

    by Jonathan Openshaw | 25 Février 2014

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  • Sculptor Kate MccGwire's feathered artworks arrive at Le Royal Monceau in Paris

    by Jessica Klingelfuss Wallpaper* | Octobre 2013

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  • Kate MccGwire, Let's get feathering!

    ArtNews | 19 Août 2013

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  • A bird in the hand

    CRAFT magazine | Janvier-Février 2013

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  • Flight of Fancy

    Cercle | 2012

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  • Echoes Sensation of Nature in her Work

    by Laura Havlin Flaunt magazine

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  • Les fascinantes sculptures à plumes de Kate MccGwire

    Télérama

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