• Dominic Watson, God Bless Strawberry Jam
    Dominic Watson
    From the Land of Milk and Honey, 2023
    Aluminium Head, Steel Bucket, water pump, Cider
    24 x 30 x 20 cm

    Dominic Watson

    God Bless Strawberry Jam
    Residency 01
    23 June - 1 July 2023
    God Bless Strawberry Jam is the title of British artist Dominic Watson’s site-specific exhibition - representing the culmination of six weeks of research and development as the first recipient of The Cob Award.
    At the heart of the conceptual part of his practice, Watson twists narratives that relate to English histories and mythologies with a visual language that subverts that of the caricature.
    The exhibition’s title refers to both album name and specifically, a line, extracted from a song called The Village Green Preservation Society by British band The Kinks. The Village Green Preservation Society was an album released by the band as an act of defiance following their controversial ban from touring America in 1965. This deliberate comparison is an insight into Watson’s anarchic take on quintessential ‘Englishness’ - the main field of enquiry across his practice.
    A sculptural installation will transform the residency studio, referencing elements of the traditional English Country Garden - a site of interest that Watson has focussed on his research during the residency. Using the English garden landscape as an entry point - Watson comments on archaic structures at the heart of English Society whilst imbuing his sculptural installation with the anxieties of a post-Brexit society.
    Life-sized, but redacted figurative sculptures - equally absurd as they are grotesque - sit against a digitally produced backdrop of an 18th Century landscape based upon those designed by Lancelot ‘Capability’ Brown and rendered in the style of painter Claude Lorraine. To enhance this landscape vista, Watson’s sculptures function as water fountains. However, rather than water, Watson chooses to pump English cider between his sculptures - filling the room with an intoxicating scent of English summer whilst satirising the decorative form and idle function of the seemingly superfluous outdoor object. Meanwhile, working with a combination of materials including Terracotta, paper and epoxy clays, Watson explores the visceral qualities of the human body, by way of exaggerating the narratives he builds for his sculptures.
    An exhibition text written by the artist draws on his experiences visiting Stourhead’s National Trust site. Here, Watson treats the exhibition as if it were an actual historical garden and the text set in the canteen; a place that has been a site of reflection throughout his time on the programme.

    Dominic Watson makes life size figurative sculptures that are equally absurd and grotesque. He works with a combination of paper mâché and handmade clay. Through these materials he explores the visceral qualities of the human body. Watson’s work is often satirical employing humour as a tool to explore the feeling of existing in contemporary Britain.


    Dominic Watson lives and works in London.  Recent solo and duo exhibitions include“Goody-Goody” Lumpsome, St Chads, London, UK (2023); Death By The Sea, Quench Gallery, Margate, UK (2021);  The Steak Eaters, Proudick, London, UK (2019); Stunning Contemporary, Syracuse University, New York, US (2016).  Group exhibitions include Testament, Goldsmiths CCA, London, UK (2022); Balls, OOF Gallery, London , UK (2022); Plymouth Contemporary, KARST, Plymouth, UK (2017); CURRENT: Contemporary Art from Scotland in Shanghai, Duolun Museum, Shanghai, China (2016); Pandiculate! The Joy of Stretching, The Koppel Project, London, UK (2016); London Open, Whitechapel Gallery, London, (2015); Wearing Potentiality, Paradise Row, London, UK (2014); New Contemporaries,  Spike Island, Bristol, UK (2013); New Contemporaries, ICA London, UK (2013).


    Exhibition Text


    Selected Press:

    Dissected: An Interview with Dominic Watson, Curatorial Affairs, 2023