Monday, 15 May 2017

Forest+Found - Makers in Residence (Archaeology)

I am thrilled to announce this year’s VERVE Visiting Makers in Residence are Forest+Found. Collaborative makers Max Bainbridge and Abigail Booth are fine artists whose experiments with traditional and less traditional making processes create objects that celebrate the intrinsic beauty of found natural materials. 

As part our Heritage Lottery Funded VERVE project, Max and Abi are taking inspiration from the newly redisplayed archaeology collection. These new displays bring together archaeological objects from across the world. Organised by material, they showcase thousands of years of human endeavour and highlight the ability of humans to create functional objects that solve to everyday life problems using the environment around them.

What excites me most about this collaboration with Max and Abi is the synergy between their own working practice and the archaeology on display. Making from found materials through experimental techniques that give a nod to traditional processes, Forest+Found learn through practice, refining their techniques guided by the material itself, in a similar way to the earliest humans.

Max and Abi looking at Egyptian rush matting from the Archaeology collection
Forest+Found researching the VERVE archaeology collections
© Pitt Rivers Museum
To kickstart the residency Max and Abi visited our research space with support from our wonderful collections team. They were drawn to two main areas of the collection: the stone archaeology that does not immediately reveal its functional use but is a charismatic form, alongside organic woven pieces that immediately tell you their function despite being a fragment of their original object. 

Forest+Found residency research visit - object Scottish Carved ball
Carved ball, Scotland; 1892.60.12 © Pitt Rivers Museum
To see more about Forest+Found and their residency so far visit their blog at or follow them on Instagram @forestandfound to see their stunning photographs documenting their residency.

Experimental workshops participants
Experimental making workshop © Forest+Found 
As part of the residency Max and Abi would like to meet you. They will be running the following events:

Saturday 27 May – Experimental Object Workshop
This workshop is suitable for over 16s who are looking to reengage with their own creative practice or have a go at being creative for the first time. It will enable participants to trial, test and investigate found natural materials to re-imagine and create new objects inspired by the museum’s collections. Find out more and book your place visit

Thursday 1 June – The Future of Objects
The Future of Objects is a roundtable event with some fascinating speakers. Info and book:

In the meantime, and in anticipation of their final installation, come and see the archaeology displays that are currently being installed on the top floor of the Museum.

Beth McDougall
VERVE Education and Outreach Officer

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