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A First at Frist Center

The Frist Center will present United Kingdom artist Claire Morgan's first solo exhibition in the United States, featuring the recent works that exemplify her ecologically minded artistic practice.

Born in Belfast, Northern Ireland, and presently living in Newcastle, England, Morgan has lived in industrialized urban centers for many years and has developed an abiding interest in how animals adapt to the artificial conditions of human production.

In her installations, sculptures, paintings and works on paper, Morgan stages dramatic encounters between humans and nature that simultaneously captures the elegance and beauty of life, as well as the senselessness and shock of death.

Morgan combines taxidermy along with organic and inorganic materials to create works that explore the complexity and fragility of natural processes and animal life forms. In her work, she collects objects including seeds, insects and torn bits of plastics that she uses to construct three-dimensional works of grids and geometric shapes. Caught in the webs of those materials are birds, deer, foxes and other animals that live alongside humans.

At the center of Morgan's cabinet sculpture "Within You Without You," for example, is a small dunnock surrounded by shreds of polythene shopping bags. While the brown-feathered bird is typically camouflaged in its natural habitat of trees and brush, it stands out vulnerably amid the artificial colors of litter.

The exhibit, Claire Morgan: Stop Me Feeling, runs February 10 – May 7, 2017, at the Frist Center. Groups of 10 or more can receive discounts with advance reservations by calling 615.744.3247. For additional information, visit

Photo: Claire Morgan. Within You Without You, 2015. Dunnock (taxidermy), torn colored polythene, nylon and glass, 29 x 24 3/8 x 24 3/8 in. Private Collection, USA, courtesy of Galerie Karsten.

 Written by Cassie Westrate, staff writer for Groups Today.

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