Cocaine, Zopiclone, Xanax, from the ‘Self-Medication’ series, Porcelain with glazed interior, 24cm x 16cm (ø), 2017


William Martin (b. 1988 Cape Town, lives and works in London) explores themes of absence, masculinity, and colonial history. Martin apprenticed to master potter John Bauer whilst studying Social Sciences, Anthropology, Art History, and English at the University of Cape Town. He went on to pursue an MA in Modern Literature and Contemporary Art at Christie’s Education and University of Glasglow, serve as a ceramics studio technician and teacher at Turning Earth, and was a resident artist at the Florence Trust (2014-2015). He is currently based at The Kiln Rooms and the Bussey Building in Peckham Rye. Recent exhibitions include Curious Body (2016, Velorose gallery), Taxonomy and Ambiguous Objects (2015, The Florence Trust), and Swallow My Pride (2010, Cape Town).


Katherine Finerty (2017)

Independent Curator and Writer




Taxonomy, Mixed Media, Dimensions Variable, 2015


William Martin uses ceramic as a medium for both its material, and socio-economic history. He does this to contextualise his own position, addressing the Enlightenment, the Industrial Revolution and Colonialism. He uses his biography as the field of study, providing examples that highlight the complex and conflicted nature of meaning. The fictional narratives he creates are explored through text and installations. His practice avoids a material or object hierarchy - everything is fodder for critique - but does have a vocabulary based around materiality and production processes. His practice is participatory and inclusive, often inviting the viewer to engage and expand the work in some way.


Kate Neave (2015)

Resident Currator, Florence Trust