Artist Lucy Stein translates the underground passages of West Cornwall into a tiled installation with her Wet Room exhibition. These Neolithic spaces are believed to have been sites for ritual rebirthing ceremonies, a theme reflected in Stein’s choice to have water flow perpetually into and out of the bath and sink in the central piece.
Though the majority of the exhibition’s artworks are paintings and drawings created during both the pandemic and Stein’s second pregnancy that weave “together personal experiences with feminist and psychoanalytic theory, mythology and religion”, tile is the medium of choice for two of the exhibition’s largest pieces.
The blood red Persephone holding a pomegranate seed was made especially for the De La Warr Pavilion in Bexhill where this branch of the exhibition is currently taking place. Queen of the underworld and goddess of springtime was chosen to reference the building’s original design which included a 26ft sculpture of Persephone by Frank Dobson which was lost, incomplete, in the second world war.
More hand-painted ceramic tiles are found in the focus of the exhibition, Wet Room. Designed to celebrate the goddess culture of Land’s End, this corner space is a modern take on Lyonesse – “the legendary sunken kingdom off the Cornish peninsula.” Mermaids and sea creatures are depicted amongst the tiles, selected to represent Carl Jung’s concept of the Anima.
The exhibition is running until the 9th May 2022. The De La Warr Pavilion is open Wednesday to Sunday from 10am until 5pm.
More on the exhibition here.
A new post by Hanna Simpson, Diary of a Tile Addict, March 2022.