Morven is a mercurial force of creativity and gumption. A Glasgow-based inter-disciplinary artist, her work spans pottery, sculpture, costume and performance. She sells her ceramic creations from her market stall at the legendary Barras in Glasgow’s East End. In her own words, “I am interested in the homemade, the handmade, DIY and shonkiness, as well as precision, shape and form – I like abstract absurdities and grandiose gestures. I am a professional amateur and am making it up as I go along. I make mistakes.”
A grounded humanity, humour and gentle cheek underpin Morven’s work, which we find compelling in numerous ways. It’s impossible not to be moved by her creations, which charm and provoke in equal measure.
Morven graduated from Glasgow School of Art with a degree in sculpture, before graduating as a Shoemaker from Cordwainer’s College in London. She has also studied Movement at the prestigious Ecole de Theatre de Jacques Lecoq in Paris.
What value does craft have in daily life?
I think making and creating stuff is simply an innate human activity. I really believe everyone deserves the opportunity and time to make things, have ideas and act upon them through their hands. For me, making stuff, and touching things makes me content, and I have to do it. I'm a thing person. I need the relationship between the hand, the heart, the brain and materials. I never feel comfy with separating out things that people make - sculpture, craft, 3-d design. I'm a humble thing-maker and thing person.
On the other side, using things that thing-makers have made - its about human connection to me. To feel the joy of making and creation of another human being in your hand. So from that point of view, the value of craft in daily life is that it is intrinsic to our human existence. Ha!
What does Scottishness mean to you?
Ah, Scottishness. So, I definitely feel Scottish, it's true. Being from a small country, and also being tied to another group of countries, has formed for me the idea of a gang-like sense of togetherness. But this feeling, (which I'm drawn to) can also manifest in being inward-looking if we only look as far as the gang. I try to practise a type of welcoming Scottishness, like, come in, be part of our rabble, Scottish is a feeling! What feeling? That feeling of: yeah, you're a wee guy, but you got grit and soul. You're up for the party, you're ready to go, you're adept at failure, but you get up again after a fall. You're a wee tenacious beastie wearing your heart on your sleeve. Although I’m probably saying all this as I was actually born in Cumbria and spent the first 2 weeks of my life living in a caravan in Bardsea caravan park!
So, therefore, my answer is that Scottishness is that wee-beastie-feeling available to everyone with open hearts and a sweaty desire to dance! Even people born in England! Also, fun fact: I like tartan!