The Rectory Projects present an exhibition of new works from Louise Hildreth and Sophie Mason.

at The Rectory Projects

Using foraged, natural materials both artists have employed gardening, performance, painting and sculpture as way to explore connections between people and the natural world.

Louise Hildreth lives and works at The Rectory in London. Her work moves between exploring expansive, overarching themes like womanhood and ecology, and more magnified inquiries into the objects and experiences of her immediate environment. The Rectory garden, previously deserted, has an acre of absolute wilderness that has been a project of revival but one that has forced Hildreth to consider the ‘social hierarchy’ that we impose on to nature.

The current works venerate the humble weed. Through the performative action of categorising and binding the ‘weeds’ Hildreth seeks to pay homage to the uprooted plants. The binding acts as a process of preservation and the gesture, whilst intimate, contemplative and sensual is simultaneously an act of oppression. Within the action Hildreth considers the history of binding and women as well as carrying out a deeper inquiry into the plant species: its properties, uses and folkloric stories.

In a state of metamorphosis, the works go through a natural process of decomposition: their weight changes, the binding gets looser and begins to unravel.

Sophie Mason lives and works between Spain and the UK. Her practice explores the connections of care between people and the natural world.

In this latest series of work Mason treats the fabric of the canvas as an intermediary for ritualised action in nature. She first dyes it with plants and then over a period of many months washes it in the sea, buries it in sand and soil, ties it to trees, rubs herbs, ash and coal into it. She will use whatever is around her in that particular environment without attachment to the outcome. After this process she cuts up the canvas and attaches pieces of it to a series of stretcher bars and through painting begins a dialogue with the remaining marks.

Interested in accumulating meaning and wear and tear of affection in objects of long-term love such as a childhood bear or a spiritual icon, Mason is curious whether the residue of actions between her and the environment can translate into the works.

Visits are appointment: please email:

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Opening Times
7 - 13 October 2018
by appointment

The Rectory Projects
All Saints Rectory, Newby Place,
E14 0EY