‘The pattern, form and intricacies of lace resonate deeply as a metaphor for our relationship to the fabric of our cities … social connections … and our common heritage.’


Place, history and how the past impacts upon the present are the core themes of Catherine Bertola’s artistic practice. Previous works have responded to the architecture and history of a setting through installations that subtly intervene with the space, implying other narratives beyond the surface. Often working with materials such as dust and wallpaper, she creates intricate pieces that detail the personal and intimate, the domestic.

For some time the artist has been fascinated by lace as object and status symbol, its manufacture and associations with women’s social history. For Prickings, Catherine has collaborated with curator Frances Lord, Fabrica, Nottingham Castle Museum and The Bowes Museum to explore lace in the context of the social, political and cultural histories of each gallery site.

Her research for Fabrica has centred on the images and histories of notable Victorian women associated with Brighton & Hove. Her installation draws together these preoccupations into a series of delicate, yet penetrating ‘portraits’, based on 19th Century female clothing and accessories.

Total Vistor Numbers: 6, 325

Exhibition Visitor Comments

An oasis of bygone peace and calm

Such exhausting and undervalued yet intricate work. Well done for salvaging it from obscurity – beautiful!

The most beautiful, feminine work I have seen in a very long time. Powerful and precise.

Image Gallery

Photographs by Philip Carr