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Thursday 7 March 2019

Lucy Orta

Public Lecture


This public lecture marks the importance of textiles as a discipline at Manchester School of Art and its significance to the wider history and production in Manchester.

Lucy Orta is an artist at the forefront of textiles as a dynamic contemporary practice.

Her work investigates the boundaries between the body and architecture, exploring their common social factors, communication and identity. She uses the media of drawing, couture, sculpture, performance, video and photography to realise a singular body of work that includes, Refuge Wear and Body Architecture (1992–98), portable, lightweight and autonomous structures that question issues of mobility and survival; Nexus Architecture (1994–2002), public interventions in which participants connect to each other, shaping modular and collective structures that visualise the concept of the social link, and Life Guards (2004–ongoing), which reflects on the body as a metaphorical supportive framework. (

The event reinforces the environment of textile research and practice at Manchester School of Art and links with wider research and public engagement activities around textiles such as the biennale conference Textile and Place hosted by Manchester School of Art and the Whitworth which took place in April 2018. The conference sought to examine how textiles connects with the idea of place in its histories, its production, sustainable future ecologies and in its narratives of migration, sociability and politics.

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