Sarah Forrest

The Pot, 2015

Video, 8 minutes and 48 seconds

Sarah Forrest’s (b.1981) work is rooted in how narrative travels through (and with) the characters and objects it describes, and the forms that represent it. Forrest’s voice is the consistent element that appears in each of her works, whether she’s working with video, sound, or a written text. But the voice does not always represent the artist herself, sometimes the work seems to be the ‘I’ doing the talking, sometimes the ‘I’ seems to share the position of a viewer, and sometimes it’s a character within a described situation doing the talking. There is a natural sense of entanglement within the work, and navigating its complexities on an intellectual level can generate a bodily reaction not unlike when one is contemplating a sculpture or installation, rather than a video.

As a viewer it is a strange and interesting experience, but for Forrest, as a maker, it generates a certain lack. Outwith direct contact with her computer, there is nothing tactile in her production process, and bodily sensation is generated only through suggestion. Such frustration is embodied in The Pot (2015), which records the artist’s hands as she throws a pot, a skill – she explains – that she has only recently learned. It is an attempt by the artist to produce something ‘tangible’ through touch, rather than technology, to satisfy her own desires as a maker, but also to understand the abstract thoughts of a character she is developing for a story, the pot functioning as a proxy for real and imagined yearnings.

Exhibited in:


The Tetley, Leeds (24 Sept 2019 → 19 Jan 2020)