Serena Korda


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Year 2023
Medium Pen, ink, watercolour, coloured pencil, felt tip pen on paper
Dimensions 29.6 x 20.9 cm

About the work

This work combines my interest in tromp l’oeil, pareidolia (seeing faces in things), rock formations and anatomical drawings. Made whilst working on a series of new sculptures for my solo show “Wild Apples” at East Quay Watchet opening September 2024. This new body of work re-imagines fertility rights and the notion of the crone rethinking what it means to move through the menopause, challenging reductionist and often demonising representations of older women in art and medical history. The work thinks about the female body from inside out and is inspired by the hyper-sexualised anatomical venus’ of 17th century Florence.

Inspired by Clarissa Pinkola Estes reclaiming of wild women in storytelling she rewrites the ancient viewpoint of the crone as “The one who sees far, who looks into spaces between the worlds and can literally see what is coming, what has been, and what is now and what underlines and stands behind many things…”

Career Highlights

Serena Korda (born. 1979, London) has a multi-media, installation-based practice that has ‘world-building’ at its core. Weaving together a host of influences her work channels and challenges the myths, folklore, witchcraft and magic from which she draws inspiration. Korda reviews historic narratives through a feminist lens, reworking them to create her own idiosyncratic mythology. Her sculptures predominantly adopt the notoriously unforgiving medium of clay, embracing its potential technical imperfections along with its decorative and domestic heritage. The inability of women to express agency in ancient myth is often counter-balanced by the quiet rebellion of their craft, this ‘weaponising’ of craft defines Korda’s own practice, weaving stories to create her own timeless ‘myths’ and in doing so challenging many societal conventions of today.

Ritual is continually investigated as part of Korda’s practice, specifically its historic role within violence. Many of K0rda’s audio works investigate how to make invisible forces palpable and create an environment of care in a world that is turning on itself. As such her practice challenges an anthropocentric vision of the world; the animism of objects is celebrated, the violence of humans laid bare.

Serena was awarded the prestigious Paul Hamlyn Artists Award 2021 and was the Norma Lipan/BALTIC Fellow in Ceramic Sculpture at Newcastle University 2016-2018. She has exhibited widely, including at Hayward Gallery (as part of Strange Clay: Ceramics in Contemporary Art), Camden Arts Centre, Glasgow International 2016, Wellcome Collection, Turner Contemporary and The Tetley, she has also created numerous public art commissions, including W.A.M.A the Work as Movement Archive 2012 and Black Diamond 2015. Recent solo shows include Missing Time at BALTIC Gateshead, Daughter’s of Necessity at The Hepworth Wakefield 2018, The Bell Tree Trust New Art and Bluecoat 2018 and Missing Time, a performance for The High Line NYC 2018.

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