Plymouth City Museum & Art Gallery
Paul Scott (b.1953, Darley Dale, UK) is based in rural Cumbria. Paul’s commissioned work can be found in public places in Carlisle, Gateshead and Newcastle-upon-Tyne. He has also completed large-scale works in Hanoi, Vietnam and at the Guldagergård public sculpture park in Denmark. His ceramic printed objects are in national and international private and public collections including The National Museum of Art, Architecture and Design in Norway; the Victoria and Albert Museum, London; The National Museum, Stockholm; Tullie House, Carlisle; and The Shipley Art Gallery, Gateshead.
Plymouth City Museum and Art Gallery, National Museum Wales, National Museums Liverpool and Bristol Museum & Art Gallery commissioned Paul Scott to develop a new work through the Contemporary Art Society’s New Story of Craft Scheme between 2012 and 2015. There are many similarities between the collections that were involved in the commission. All are port cities with a history of trade as well as manufacture, and in particular, all had eighteenth-century porcelain factories. Paul Scott made a research visit to each of the collections and was interested not only in the ceramics but more widely in the prints and drawings as well as archaeological collections. Scott’s final work is a response to the objects, prints and materials he unearthed during this research phase.
The work consists of four obsolete print drawers. Each of these contain an amalgamation of historic ceramics. These pieces have been re printed with new decals (digital prints) to give the historic pieces a new life and also to convey stories relating to each of the four venues. Scott often makes political comments in his practice and a closer look at this new work shows a fracking rig printed onto a nineteenth-century piece of earthenware as well as an engraving of a badger perhaps alluding to the contentious issue of badger culling in the UK. The work also makes visual reference to the darker side of the local histories surrounding Plymouth, Cardiff, Liverpool and Bristol and their association with the slave trade.
Presented by the Contemporary Art Society, 2015