Marie-Thérèse Ross explores the hidden workings of the mind, focussing on states of physical, emotional & psychological transformation. These transformations can occur naturally, as well as those impacted by the nature of the outside world and its effect on our personal inner worlds. Her work appears humorous as well as darkly subversive, as she seems to hide herself in plain sight. She seeks to both reveal and hide awkward personal experiences including childhood memories, episodes that reflect on her own sense of vulnerability and mortality. She creates installations that focus on domestic interiors with anthropomorphic furniture and trapped giant black birds. Birds are often used symbolically in art history and Ross adds her own layer of personal symbolism. Her birds are disruptive and noisy, they represent the exterior world, whereas the furniture seems to move silently, reflecting the more vulnerable and fragile inner core. By focusing on the personal interior versus the outside world, Ross grapples with themes and ideas that include feminism, childhood, mortality, the body, displacement and the human condition.
Her work might hang on the wall, lean, or sit between wall and floor, or move completely into the physical space of the viewer. In a recent solo show at The Stone Space in London, she incorporated her sculptures into an atmospheric installation with accompanying music creating an immersive environment.
Her sculptures are made of a combination of laminated wood parts. Using found objects which are integrated and sublimated into the works with carved and painted up-cycled wood, colour adds another layer of expression and meaning to the whole. The mass of wood echoes the drawn and cut-out lines found in her drawings and collages, lending itself well to her process of working. Dowels join and secure pieces together, often left exposed rather than smoothed away and hidden. Surfaces are not polished, the grain of the wood is left visible, and the process of making revealed.
A recent residency on Eilean Shona, an isolated Scottish Island, represented a new challenge to the artist, where she sought to address her new environment with its temperate rain forest, beaches and pine forests. She worked outdoors in the landscape making site specific sculptures and wood block prints. She also made small wall-based sculptures using found materials including bark, lichens and sea weed, as well as producing over 100 drawings and watercolours.
Marie-Thérèse Ross MRSS is a member of The Royal Society of Sculptors. She is an Art Gemini Prize winner (2021), and her work is featured in Flux Review #7. Her work has been exhibited at the Royal Cambrian Academy, The Stone Space, APT Deptford, and in 2022 she was commissioned by Camden to design posters for newly restored Swiss Cottage Library.
Ross was awarded a First Class BA hons in painting from Loughborough College of Art and Design, she went onto to study sculpture in Germany for a year at Karlsruhe Staatliche Akademie der Bildenden Künste with the British sculptor Michael Sandle RA. She studied sculpture for her MA at the University of Pennsylvania in the USA.
Instagram / Artist Support Pledge: www.instagram.com/marietherese_ross/
Kingsgate Workshops Trust: www.kingsgateworkshops.org.uk