Photo: Caitlin Heffernan in Brighton, South East

Caitlin Heffernan

Artist, Curator

In my work I use, adapt and transform domestic objects and create sculptural forms that are inspired by a variety of elements drawn from social and personal histories. I also create immersive installations that use craft elements, drawing and photography drawing on traditions of assemblage and installation. I am interested in ideas surrounding memory, home, social histories and the real and imagined and many of my works have elements that suggest longing, escape and melancholy. Another important part of my work is the notion of landscape and place and how these strands can be experienced through common domestic objects and materials such as wallpaper, curtains and furniture coverings. I find these mediums offer the chance to rework familiar patterns and make them recall the netherworld between waking and dreaming, a world where images, shapes and memory morph. Many of my installations, embroidery pieces, drawings and photography have been triggered by domestic objects, fabrics and family photographs because I find that these can be used to recall a previous time and moment and to perhaps trigger a sense of memory in the viewer. I also use historical and archival research as inspiration to create my pieces. Transformation and metamorphosis have been important elements in recent works, including pieces like Other, which drew inspiration from the history of Preston Manor, a historic home in Brighton and the historic practice there of burying family pets in a 'pet cemetery'. There was a strong element of the uncanny in this piece, which fused craft and embroidery practice with social histories and a supernatural sense of the 'other'. Similarly, recent works, such as Tree Boys and Tree are inspired by specific social histories and particular historic locations, but both works fuse these elements to produce something that seems strange but rooted in a tangible sense of history.

Location Brighton, South East
Activities Residencies, Private commissions, Curating, Exhibitions programme, Project management
Artforms / type of project Installation, Intervention, Mixed Media, Sculpture, Textiles
Tags site-specific, installation, crafts, research, curatorial, sculpture, intervention

News & Events

  • Leaving Home-a new setting for site-specific contemporary craft

    17/04/2015 – 31/05/2015
    Contemporary Applied Arts

    Unravelled presents, Leaving Home, a selection of works from the three year project, Unravelling the National Trust, at Contemporary Applied Arts.

    Find out more

  • In-Site Commission

    I have been selected to work on a collaborative commission with sound artist Jane Pitt, to respond to the riverside of Rochester and Chatham. The temporary site-specific project launches in June 2015.

  • Open Studios

    08/11/2014 – 09/11/2014
    Phoenix Brighton Studios

    Open studios on the weekend of the 8 & 9 November, open 11-5pm. Find over 100 studios to visit. My studio is on the 1st floor.

    Find out more

  • Unravelling Uppark

    06/05/2014 – 02/11/2014
    Uppark National Trust property.

    Site-specific responses to Uppark House and Gardens

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  • Unravelling Uppark

    Site-specific installation Remnants at Uppark House and Gardens, the final in the series of Unravelling the National Trust.

  • Emergency Craft Open at aspex

    I have been selected for the forthcoming Emergency Craft Open at aspex gallery, Portsmouth.

  • Arrivals & Departures-Travel Bursary to New York

    I have been awarded a travel bursary from Farnham Maltings to carry out a research and development visit to New York, next March 2014.

  • Hoodwink Commission

    I have just been selected for Hoodwink's 4th commission working with two venues the Gun & Spitroast pub and the Horsmonden social club, in Horsmonden, Kent.

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