Approved: 16.08.2006

Liz Clifford


Approved: 16.08.2006

Artist Statement


The work is concerned, on a micro level, with a narrow locale and specific objects. However, on a macro level it is engaged with discourse about geological time, climate change and environmental breakdown.

I make multi-disciplinary responses to landscape through sculpture, drawing, collage, print, photography and video. The three-dimensional pieces are made directly with found objects and found materials both on site, as interventions, and in the studio. They have two-dimensional and time-based elements to accompany them.

Central to my practice is the daily act of walking in the landscape of the South Downs National Park. It is where materials and subject matter are found. The walk is act of self-care as well as care for the place, clearing litter as I go. The human-made detritus I collect, the materiality of those objects, the act of walking and the hill itself are my subject matter.

This repetitive focus on landscape and geology has allowed me to explore concerns around fossil-fuelled recreation, plastic-waste, and erosion in the work.

Debate around the politics of litter, explored by rural sociologist Rosemary Shirley, have prompted a closer look at my own reactions to what I find. Litter in a rural context is not tidied away but has a striking and enduring presence that often throws up ironic juxtapositions.

I have experimented with placing rubbish-filled gabion baskets, which are themselves associated with the geo-engineering of flood defence in the face of rising sea-levels, on the site of the littering and have made works that tidy it all away inside the structures. The 1:10 ratio of biomass to human-made detritus in the work is a reference to that outlined by field geologist Jan Zalasiewicz in his essay The Anthropocene Square Meter which helps to visualize the enormity of human impact on the earth.

The project, Byway 745 Observatory, was a year-long residency in a section of 4000 year old rural sunken lane, currently a Byway Open to All Traffic. The area studied reaches down from the canopy of beech trees to the bedrock of chalk. A critical zone, as defined by earth system scientists and explored politically by the late Bruno Latour. The zone, a few kilometres thick, from the lower atmosphere to the upper bedrock in which life on earth occurs. This was an exercise in stopping to look rather than passing through. Observations were made by drawing on site and collecting materials, as well as by using video to record natural cycles and human interventions. The presentation of these findings was realised in 2021 as a multi-faceted installation involving large scale drawings, structures containing salvaged materials and video projection.

Recent sculptural works explore tensions between the natural and the manmade with particular reference to the brutality of wire fencing and the ability of trees to grow around human-imposed constraints. The materials salvaged from both the landscape and the domestic sphere are contained in stacks of steel gabions and the soft corporeal forms break out from the mesh, hinting at evolving hybrid forms. There are references made to the human body through scale as well as through the materiality of the left-overs and discarded items.

CV & Education



2021 - M.A. Fine Art, University for the Creative Arts, Farnham 

1985 - B.Ed.(Hons) Fine Art and Education, Homerton College, University of Cambridge

Solo Exhibitions and Projects.


Byway 745 Observatory, Wheatham Hill, Hampshire


Forest Arts Centre, New Milton, Hampshire


Academy Literary Club, London

High Water, Omphalos Arts, Sandwich, Kent


St Bartholomew's Hospital, London


Burial at Sea, Windsor Arts Centre, Berkshire 

Submarine Gallery, London


Hardware Gallery, London 

Group Exhibitions and Projects.


Transient Traces, UCA Farnham Sculpture Garden, Surrey.

Boundaries, Hampshire Sculpture Trust at West Downs Gallery, University of Winchester.

Gallery No.32, Sculpture park, Bexley, London.


Haus a Rest, Land Art. Curated online exhibtion.

Alt-terior, 2021 MA Fine Art Graduates, James Hockey Gallery, UCA Farnham, Surrey

Bedrock, The Oast House, Farnham, Surrey

Forgotten Thought, MA Fine Art UCA Farnham Exhibition, Safehouse 1, Peckham, London

Unsettled Focus, MA Fine Art UCA Farnham Exhibition, South Molton St Gallery, London

Artists Responding To A.R.T. online zine Issue 7

The Sky Has No Surface. Curated online exhibition. 

Beyond the Boundaries. University for the Creative Arts, Farnham and online @undertowprojects


Haus a Rest. The Environment. Curated online exhibition. 

You Are Here. Curated online exhibition. 

Under(cover) - Art made during lockdown. Instagram. mafineartucafarnham


Objections, Linear Gallery, University for the Creative Arts, Farnham


Inspired by the Word, Petersfield Museum, Hampshire


10 days Chalk, The Winchester Gallery, Winchester School of Art, Winchester, Hampshire


Mottisfont Open, National Trust, Mottisfont Abbey, Romsey, Hampshire


Under The Beeches, public woodland, rural Hampshire


Hampshire Sculpture Trust, The Winchester Gallery, Winchester School of Art, Hampshire

In To Land, Arlington Arts Centre, Newbury, Berkshire


Auf Europaïsche Art, Historischen Rathaus, Warendorf, Germany

Hampshire Sculpture Trust, Winchester Gallery, Winchester School of Art, Hampshire 


PAinT Arts Trail, Open Studio, The Avenue, Petersfield, Hampshire


Art in the Garden, Beatrice Royal Gallery, Eastleigh, Hampshire

Little Gems, Beatrice Royal Gallery, Eastleigh, Hampshire


Women's Work, Willis Museum, Basingstoke, Hampshire


Open Dialogue, Forest Arts, New Milton, Hampshire

Voyage around George Staunton, Staunton Country Park, Havant - Hampshire Sculpture Trust


Hiding Places, Red House Museum, Christchurch, Dorset - collaboration with Kate Miller


Angels and Mechanics - Touring to Riverside Studios, South Hill Park Arts Centre, Tullie House - London, Bracknell and Carlisle

Touchables, Blackfriars Arts Centre, Boston, Lincolnshire

Unfamiliar Familiarity, Winchester Contemporary Art, Hampshire


Sculpins, Dartington Arts, Devon - collaboration with Jilly Sutton

Whitechapel Open, Whitechapel Gallery, London


London Group, Barbican Centre, London

Feast, Hardware Gallery, London


Barbican Arts Group Trust, Sutton House, National Trust, London


Lyth Arts Centre, Caithness, Scotland

Princes Trust, Fifteenth Anniversary, Windsor


Beast, Submarine Gallery, London


Barbican Arts Group Trust, Metropole Arts Centre, Folkestone

Reactivart, Submarine Gallery, London

Residencies, Talks and Workshops

2022    Artists’ Walk & Talk, Gallery No.32, Bexley, London

2021    Artist’s talk and tutorials, Fine Art Foundation Course, University for the Creative Arts       

2021    Digital Residency @undertowprojects

2020    Artist’s talk and tutorials, Fine Art Foundation Course, University for the Creative Arts

1997    Workshop leader for Hiding Places, Red House Museum, Christchurch, Dorset

1996    Workshop leader, Andover Museum, Andover, Hampshire

1994    Barbican Arts Group Trust, St. Dominic's Junior School, Hackney, London

1991    Artist in Residence, Lyth Arts Centre, Caithness, Scotland 

Curatorial Projects

Forgotten Thought, MA Fine Art UCA Farnham Exhibition, Safehouse 1, Peckham, London

Member of Splynta Collective

Work in Collections

Clare College, Cambridge

St Thomas' Hospital, London