From: 26th November 2021 6:00 pm

To: 19th December 2021 4:00 pm

Haarlem Art Space

Haarlem Gallery, Red Lion Hotel, Market Place, Wirksworth, DE4 4ET

From prehistoric sites to folk rituals & rave music, ten artists explore the communal act of intimacy through ‘Gathering’.




From prehistoric sites to folk rituals & rave music, ten artists explore the communal act of intimacy through ‘Gathering’.

Curated by Verity Birt and Jonathan Michael Ray, Gathering features artists, Simon Bayliss, Verity Birt, Ilker Cinarel, Georgia Gendall, Steven Claydon, Jonathan Michael Ray, Dan Howard-Birt, Abigail Reynolds, Lucy Stein, and Tom Sewell.

This belly of the universe, this womb of things to be, and tomb of things that were this unending story.

Ursula Le Guin

The first cultural device was likely a recipient or container to bring food and special objects home, rather than a weapon for killing with. Gathering-in and holding objects together in a powerful relation and sharing them with others is what we humans first learnt to do as a curious and altruistic species.

Initially inspired by Ursula K. Le Guin’s The Carrier Bag Theory of Fiction, ‘Gathering’ reflects a communal act of intimacy shared between people, site and materials; creating connections, bonds and empathy with community and landscape. From prehistoric sites of community gathering and contemporary folk rituals, to rural ‘honesty’ customs, group therapy and rave music, 10 rurally based artists explore the act of gathering and its value today after a year of travel restrictions and social isolation.

If it is a human thing to do, to put something you want, because it’s useful, edible, or beautiful, into a bag, or a basket …and then take it home with you, home being another, larger kind of …container for people, and then later on you take it out and eat it or share it …or put it in the shrine or the museum, the holy place, the area that contains what is sacred— if to do that is human, if that’s what it takes, then I am a human being after all.

Evening private view opening on Friday 26th of November 6-8pm.



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