Liz Gorman

09 March 2020

Featured in Deptford X: 2018, 2019

What are you reading at the moment? 

I’m rotating between ‘The Haunting of Hill House’ by Shirley Jackson and ‘The Unexpected Genius of Pigs’ by Matt Whyman. Bit of a contrast there! Both books were given to me by good friends, otherwise I’m reading up on photography and how it was used in the spiritualism movement.

What does a typical day look like for you?

When I have a day for my artwork, I try to spend the daytime getting admin/digital photo editing done so I can spend the evening working in the darkroom. Otherwise I work in a bar or wander around.

Describe your studio/workspace

I am a co-director at The Gate Darkroom in Woolwich, which is also the place I make my work. It’s a community darkroom right on the river in Thames-side Studios. We try to provide a social space for our members, organising exhibitions and workshops together as well as infamous parties. It’s so special to be part of a community with so many different approaches to photography and art. We’re currently working on putting a group exhibition together for the summer, bringing everyone together to make a dynamic show really stimulates my own practice.  There’s space there to be solitary as well, I tend to work in the evenings so I can put on loud music and bounce about the darkroom.

Where do your best ideas come from?

I think I come up with my best ideas on public transport, particularly buses or long distance trains. There’s something about being in a transitory space with lots of things happening around me that gets my brain working. It’s there or chatting to people, often with a glass of wine. Working in Deptford I feel lucky to have met lots of interesting artists from all areas who can really help pull an idea apart and put it back together again.

If Tate called you tomorrow and invited you to make work for the Turbine Hall, what would it be?

A few things! My first thought is a giant clam shell style plastic sculpture of my head, which is where I would take my current project if I had the resources. I also love making giant photographic prints so that would be another option. Maybe I would combine the two.

Plug your next show/event!

I have an exhibition at Deptford Does Art starting 12th March, PV and performance Friday 13th March.
It’s called Relics, and imagines thermoformed plastic packaging as an accidental hieroglyphic language – as it might be interpreted by a future civilisation. I collected plastic packaging, placed it on photographic paper and then exposed to light, revealing the intricacies of the material. The performance is a mix of a seance and a photographic workshop, should be interesting!


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