No Match forms part of the Mid Pennine Arts installation programme Contemporary Heritage, an ambitious partnership programme of contemporary art commissions inspired by Lancashire’s heritage. The installation at Helmshore Mills Textile Museum is the latest commission in the series, which is taking place at historic sites across Lancashire.
No Match, created by international sculptor Claire Morgan, is a site specific installation inspired by Helmshore Mills and Claire’s discoveries during her research residency there in October 2011. Claire spent time meeting ex-mill workers, reading accounts of their experiences and listening to recordings and found the mill workers held fond memories of the mill despite the daily hazards they had faced.
The installation is suspended in the Devil Hole, where danger arose from mans’ attempt to harness natures power, through intense heat, noise, pressure, smoke, fire and frequently blood. Claire is fascinated by our relationship with nature, the passing of time and the transience of everything around us. There is a sense of fragility that carries through all her sculptures. “I feel as if they are somewhere between movement and stillness, and thus in possession of a certain energy.”
No Match acknowledges the connection between man and machine, mill and environment, and the fragility of man, woman and child as they struggled to control nature.
"My idea for No Match came from my fascination with all the complex, repetitive, and really quite aggressive processes that occurred in the Devil Hole. I wanted to make something that traced the passage of nature through that dark, industrial space, and for me that could mean anything from the cotton, to workers, to fire, or even blood. The finished installation will hopefully acknowledge these things in an abstract but engaging way.” Claire Morgan
Visit Mid Pennine Arts website for more information: midpenninearts.org.uk/helmshore-mills-textile-museum1
Documentary by Benjamin Wigley