Q&A with Artist & Sculptor, Flora Parrott

Flora Parrott won an Arts Council/British Council Artists’ International Development Fund Award to travel to Brazil and develop the project that has become Fixed Position. In 2013 she went to the PETAR Caves, one of the largest concentrations of limestone caves in the world. The tactile, sensory experience of being in the caves channelled her thinking about certainty of position, fixity and the way we are defined by our edges. “The further I go into a cave, the more disorientated I become. The blackness is so dense that you can’t see the edge of your own form.”

Fixed Position is a UK/Brazil collaboration, co-curated by Maria Montero, director of Phosphorus Gallery in São Paulo, where it will have a second iteration. Read more about Flora, and other emerging artists on Artlyst.

Q+A : Flora Parrott

I was born in London then moved to North Yorkshire as a teenager. I studied at Glasgow School of Art and after a few years of working went on to the Royal College of Art, graduating in 2009 in Fine Art Printmaking. Since then I have been showing both nationally and internationally and teaching at a number of art schools. I am now London-based and live and work in Peckham above The Gowlett Arms run by my wonderful boyfriend Jonny.


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Where did you train, and did you have any mentors that helped you along your way?

My tutors at both Glasgow and the RCA have been an incredible support and influence, as are the students that I have the privilege of working with today. The Gallery, Tintype have been enormously supportive.

Which were your favourite parts of education, and if you could go back (fees all paid by us!) then what else would you study?

I would study Geology and Physics I think – I hated science at school but only really, I think, because I felt it was so unrelated to the arts. In my research for exhibitions I work with scientists frequently and am endlessly excited by the sense of discovery and parallels in thinking with another discipline. I value cross-disciplinary research enormously and wish there was more of this type of learning available at a young age in the UK.

Where would you escape to for a weekend away?

The North Yorkshire Moors.

Which is your favourite place (museum, park or venue) to spend a creative afternoon ?

The British Museum and British Library are a fantastic places to think and work. Raven Row Gallery, Cell Project Space, South London Gallery, Chisenhale….the best thing about living in London is the are always more exhibitions than you can possibly see.

If money was no object, what would you like to collect ?

Work by Lygia Clark, Lygia Pape, Ana Mendieta…I could make a pretty long list!

What do you use for inspiration with your work that you can not live without?

I come across interesting objects and ideas in the most unexpected places. I suppose in a way that is quite key to the work – a preoccupation with a ‘thing’ that appears very simple but can be used to explore much more complex ideas.

Can you leave us one creative secret/tip to share please?

For me it is really important to be as honest as possible in my work, sometimes showing objects and images that make me feel vulnerable. That directness means that I feel completely connected to the work and I hope it gives it an integrity, that’s important to me and I appreciate it in the work of other artists.

Thanks for your time Flora, This is a really fantastic exhibition, and is worth travelling far and wide to see it. Whilst you’re there head over for a drink in The New Rose whilst you contemplate the stimulating and beautiful work. xo

You can see Flora’s latest exhibition at the Tintype Gallery : 107 Essex Road : Islington : N1 2SL

12 March – 19 April 2014

Wednesday – Saturday: 12 – 6pm