Daughters of Necessity: Serena Korda & Wakefield's Ceramics

2 Dec 2017 – 5 Jul 2018

The Hepworth Wakefield

England, United Kingdom

Travel Information

  • FREE CITY BUS The gallery is on the FreeCityBus route operated Monday – Saturday between 9.30am and 3pm.
  • The gallery is 0.3 miles from Wakefield Kirkgate train station (approximately 8 minutes walk) and 1 mile from Westgate train station (approximately 20 minutes walk).

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“‘Daughters of necessity’, highlight their distinctive status as both functional and decorative objects. As inspiration for the exhibition Korda has looked to Greek mythology, in which the Daughters of Necessity are born of Ananke, the goddess that personifies both necessity and fate” Serena Korda


The Hepworth Wakefield is home to a rich and eclectic collection of ceramics made by some of the great names of modern pottery, including Hans Coper, Lucy Rie and Albert Wainwright. For this exhibition, British artist Serena Korda will choose a selection of these ceramics to display alongside her own new and existing works, exploring where these objects sit between function and sculpture.

Working with ceramics for several years, Korda combines her experimental approach to the material with her interest in the acoustic properties of objects. For The Hepworth Wakefield, Korda is creating a new work, Resonators, comprising five large, richly glazed vessels with openings at each end. Visitors are invited to interact with the work by placing their ears to each vessel to hear a range of bass-like tones.

The exhibition will also feature a new presentation of Korda’s ceramic sound installation Hold Fast, Stand Sure, I Scream a Revolution, which was premiered at Glasgow International Festival of Visual Art in 2016. This work is made up of 29 individual porcelain mushrooms suspended from the ceiling, which will be played as bells in public performances during the Ceramics Fair at The Hepworth Wakefield in early May.

This exhibition is inspired by an essay written for Wakefield Art Gallery in the 1950s which referred to clay vessels as ‘daughters of necessity’. With this in mind, Serena relates the idea of the Daughters of Necessity to the activity of working in ceramics, using alchemical processes that embrace risk and failure.

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Exhibiting artists

Serena Korda


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