Hoard 2013-2014


Link to the final paper summarising the 'Hoard' project





We were delighted to be invited to take part in 'Hoard', A project funded by the Departure foundation 



Hoard, Towards an Archaeology of the Artists Mind Link



A year-long project in Leeds. A group of artists are hoarding objects and artifacts relating to their practice: finished artworks, props, curiosities, documents, traces, plans, remnants.



These objects will become the starting point for new works and performances. The contents of the space will be a physical realisation of the minds of the artists as they evolve over the course of a year. Every two months, for an evening, the space will be open for viewings of this ongoing process of transformation, which will be recorded in the form of an online publication at the end of the year.





We were invited because of our propensity for accumulating the obscure, primarily Angela's collection of lost (found) gloves. Over the course of the project, our 'hoard' will morph from a documentary collection with finite rules and a traceable history into an artwork, one step removed from that which can be accurately be ascertained or interpreted.


Our progress, thoughts, images and musings will be regularly updated here  .... keep watching!







Atic studios ian clegg angela tait


(G)love 2013






Atic studios ian clegg angela tait









• n.noun


1. A hidden fund or supply stored for future use; a cache.


• v.verb


1. To gather or accumulate a hoard.

2. To accumulate a hoard of.

3. To keep hidden or private.



(G)love – an on-going collection of lost (found) gloves collected, cleans and catalogued over the course of the last seven years. (G)love was conceived by and belongs to Angela. It is an artwork with performative connotations and her seasonal obsession.



The translation of the (G)loves into a collaborative artwork requires intervention. Over the course of the project our ‘hoard’ will morph from a documentary collection with finite rules and a traceable history into something different, a number of steps removed from that which can accurately be ascertained or interpreted.



Currently a series of ceramic luggage labels are being created. The labels reference the cataloguing of the original collection but omit any of the documentary detail barring a single image upon each piece. The series will develop and grow throughout the duration of hoard into another collection abstracted from the original. A collection with the potential for multiple sculptural forms and interpretations.



Alongside the solid permanence of the ceramic, another abstraction is beginning to emerge. A series of extensive prints which dominate the gallery space, tumbling from the ceiling in ribbons resembling traditional film reels or huge photographic negatives. These extended monoprints straddle the gallery floor, manipulating the viewer’s path amongst its winding lengths. Visible are snippets of the original gloves and labels, sometimes barely discernible in their new incarnation.



Atic studios ian clegg angela tait


Gallery shot 2014



Atic studios ian clegg angela tait


Gallery shot 2014



The hanging paper sculptures


An abstraction far removed from the original collection. Currently hung semi-randomly within the huge empty office space. 


Whilst 'monumental' was the intention, the actual is far from it. That said, this is the point of this entire project. It's giving working artists space to figure, confirgure and reconfigure. The sculptural qualities of the paper are working and the intimacy of the prints is just beautiful....the poetic use of the space however....artists must try harder.



Update June 14


The sculptural prints, cause of equal measures of delight and frustration.


Making printmaking three dimensional and almost majestic in its application satisfied the need for us to combine the 2d/3d dichotomy we consistently face. This said, Hoard is an evolving project for us, we want to constantly push the practice away from its origins in the (g)love collection whilst maintaining the integrity of the idea and our own aesthetic values.


Reversing the idea of the multiple print we started to divide the ribbons into individual images. By considering each image separately we recalled the value of each piece. One of the benefits of working as a pair is the abililty to discuss (it can also be one of the biggest challenges and barriers to making decisions). We mused upon the aesthetic values of each print. The tonal values, the quality of the image and even the 'cuteness' factor. We picked our favourites and argued their case backwards and forwards.


We wanted a repository for this knowledge, a place where the discourse could continue.....A book!




Atic studios ian clegg angela tait    


(G)love 2014

Artists book - Ceramic and monoprints




Atic studios ian clegg angela tait


(G)love 2014

Ceramic and monoprint






Whilst a book conventionally has a beginning, a middle and an end, this is an image based volume with a pictorial narrative. The intimate act of reading the book involves taking each page out of its ceramic binding and the reader piecing together a narrative.



The transformative power of space – the book as curated space



Hoard has been popular in the artists’ book world, attracting attention throughout the UK. Following a number of incarnations the power of a space to alter the work started to become apparent. At each venue, a new manifestation with different aesthetics and alternative readings began to emerge.



Hoard, Leeds:



The book was laid out in a random but geometric pattern vaguely resembling a symbol or text. It was set upon the floor giving the viewer a topographical view almost akin to seeing a crop circle from the air. Primarily this was a sculpture, a whole piece. Inspection of individual pieces required the viewer kneeling to be able to view properly. The order of placement of individual pieces was entirely random and so there was no continuity of style, therefore leaving little concept of the ‘book’ apart from the vague suggestion of language through the pattern made upon the floor.





 Hoard 2014



Ordsall Hall, Salford,  The Plaster ceiling room:



The invite to show at Ordsall Hall was primarily because of the history of the space. The Plaster Ceiling Room was once a study in the very oldest part of this gorgeous Tudor building. This setting brought not only its beautiful aesthetic but a sense of authenticity to the artists’ insistence that this sculpture is actually a book. 


The book was arranged randomly. Grouped pages along the 16th century furniture, spilling onto the floor, along the windowsills and tailing off up the chimney and into alcoves.




Hoard 2014

Ordsall Hall, Salford



A more fluid sculptural piece settling gently into the historic surroundings. The room is locked and can only be viewed through a large glass panel where the door should be. A static vantage point for the viewer adding a sense of mystery to the work. The book contents became almost entirely inaccessible except for tiny glimpses of detail from the paper scrolls. Aesthetic qualities dominated with shadows cast from the natural light from the window and the white multiples in contrast with the dark wooden furniture and panelling.



Opening the Book, Bank Street Arts, Sheffield


Following the success of Hoard in Leeds and Salford, the artists were asked to show the piece as part of a festival of book arts and in conjunction with the Sheffield International Artists Book prize.


Bank street arts contains intimate but well respected gallery spaces within their city centre venue. Hoard was shown in its own space but alongside other high end experimental book arts in the forms of collaborative work and even video.


With another opportunity to play with space, this time the book was arranged in tight lines, not unlike books on shelves. Different styles of containers kept together creating ‘chapters’ upon the slightly different surfaces around the room


Hoard 2014

Bank Street Arts, Sheffield




Again, something new and unexpected happened. A sculpture in the round. Surrounding the viewer with countless items to examine and ultimately choose from to inspect the information contained inside. A performative sculpture, an invitation to view….a library?



The question of an archive


One of our primary research strands is the idea of the temporary versus permanent. We use Polaroid (the temporary medium of the photographer) and ceramic to permanantise these images.


The book has similar parallels, being seen as the archive of information for thousands of years.


The paper book has so far outlasted all of its rivals, that of the CD the DVD the floppy disc and now the cloud, all very temporary mediums of storage.


The digital file is erroneously thought of to be infinitely copy able without corruption. Files themselves such as .jpgs will undergo slow progressive corruption over time thus rendering the cloud an unsafe space for archive as well. The 0s and 1s ruling our graphic interface from the dark depths where a single keystroke can render a document useless also confirming that digital based media is at best unsafe.


We question this archival quality against mediums such as the e book. The pages of our book are still short-term, but paper has its own archival properties. The ceramic bindings are however reusable, re-filling the pages with new prints and images as they become ragged or thumbed is a choice to be considered in the future; Just as books and their content have undergone change and manipulation from the outset as they are reprinted translated and censored.


This is an artwork which continues to surprise and challenge. There are constantly new research strands to interrogate.

  • Is this actually a book?
  • Is it really even an archive?
  • As two artists working collaboratively, is this more than the sum of its parts?
  • How many sculptural and contextual possibilities are there?
  • Where do we go now – future projects


 There's already another chapter to this book. Produced in later 2015 for the purposes of the final show at The Corn Exchange, Leeds, this work is enhanced by the images of the (g)loves on the ceramic canisters adding another small yet significant dimension to the work.





  Hoard 2015

Imstalled at Corn Exchange, Leeds 




December 2015


We were invited to present a paper on the subject of our ceramic/paper book at the 'livres d'artistes' conference at the Univeristy of Cardiff in December 2015. A full transcript of the paper is available here.