Mike Cooter Exhibition - Copy.jpg

The Object is Alive

Matthew Darbyshire & Mike Cooter

The Object is Alive is a project working with artists Matthew Darbyshire and Mike Cooter, who have been commissioned to develop new work engaging with the collections at Nottingham Castle Museum & Art Gallery and New Walk Museum (Leicester) respectively.

This project is influenced by the work of Polish artist and theatre maker Tadeusz Kantor, who was interested in the role and status of the object and by the research being undertaken by Dr Dan Watt, Programme Leader for Drama at Loughborough University. Both exhibitions actively explore the role of the object, as discussed in Kantorís writing and artistic outputs, identifying and responding to different aspects of his work.

Mike Cooterís exhibition, The Mimic, the Model and the Dupe, will draw on Kantorís Anti-Exhibition (1963) and Leicester-born naturalist Henry Walter Batesí (1825-92) research into a form of mimicry that would take his name. 

Working across holdings from fine art, natural history, industrial design, decorative arts and material cultures, the exhibition will look to explore how the objects in the collection both perform and reproduce themselves through their own agency and in symbiotic relationship with organisations that host them.

Image: Research photograph (with thanks to Michael Asher), Mike Cooter, 2017. Boiler heating the Abbey Pumping Station, home of Leicester City Councilís Industrial History Museum.

Forthcoming Events:

Exhibition, Mike Cooter: The Mimic, the Model and the Dupe
14 March - 6 May 2018
New Walk Museum and Art Gallery, Leicester

Symposium - Kantor and his influence
Date tbc
Martin Hall

Past Events:

Exhibition, The Object is Alive: Matthew Darbyshire
28 January Ė 14 May 2017
Nottingham Castle Museum & Art Gallery

Artist talk and gallery tour with Matthew Darbyshire

25 February 2017, 2-3.30pm
Matthew Darbyshire led a talk about his practice and the influence of Kantor upon his new sculptures and was joined by collection curators who provided in-depth information about the objects chosen by the artist.

Tadeusz Kantor and The Object is Alive with Dr. Emily LaBarge
4 March 2017, 2-3.30pm
Dr. Emily LaBarge presented an illustrated talk based on her essay for The Object is Alive examining the work of both Kantor and Matthew Darbyshire.

The project is a collaboration between Radar and Nottingham Castle Museum and New Walk Museum and has been financially supported by Henry Moore Foundation and Arts Council England.

Exhibition, The Object is Alive: Matthew Darbyshire

Exhibition, The Object is Alive: Matthew Darbyshire

Find out more


Loughborough University Arts

Martin Hall Building

Loughborough University

Loughborough LE11 3TU, UK


01509 222 948

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