Mythical Mother is an online art exhibition which will begin on 9 September until 30 September 2021. 

The exhibition has been curated by Georgie White Winter and exhibiting artists include Shweta Bist, Michelle Gallagher, Marcia Michael, Nadia Nizamudin, Helen Sargeant, Celine Sheridan, Lynsey Watson, Georgie White Winter, and Maliheh Zafarnezhad.

Today the mother is tied up in myth and mystery. If we are to understand who we are then we must look at our mothers, and at our mothers’ mothers. For centuries, mythology and folklore across different cultures have either idealised or demonised women as Goddesses, warriors, clairvoyants, monsters or witches.

Whether revered as magical or dreaded as monstrous, representations of motherhood are steeped in expectation and preconceived ideas. We are mythical mothers yet our bodies and identities are still determined and shaped by predominant cultural expectations. What influence have these narratives had on modern mothers?

As we lay our heads on the pillow and start dreaming, do we feel empowered?

What does motherhood look like for us, and for others? Mythical Mother presents work by nine international artists who grapple with these very questions. The exhibition challenges us to look through and beyond the dominant myths and toward a multifaceted mother whose truth and vulnerability provides a space to reclaim the value of mothering.

Artworks in the exhibition include:

  • Georgie White Winter’s photo series “Old Wives Tales” exploring folklore in pregnancy
  • photographic portraits by Shweta Bist which contemplate how motherhood has been portrayed in Hindu, Christian, Greek and Egyptian mythologies
  • sculptural works by Maliheh Zafarnezhad created during the third lockdown
  • Marcia Michael’s self-portraits as a “living myth” exploring her identity as a black woman and mother

  • The exhibition also includes new paintings by Celine Sheridan, mixed media textiles by Nadia Nizamudin, performance by Lynsey Watson and ceramic sculpture by Michelle Gallagher. 

    The following events will also take place:

    Presenting the Mythical Mothers

    Opening Event & Conversation with Lucy Soutter 

    Thursday 9th September 8pm BST

    Register here

    The Stories our Mothers Told Us

    Artists in conversation with Becca Pelly-Fry

    Wednesday 15th September 12:45pm

    Register here

    The Night of Mythical Mothers

    An evening of performance hosted by Jemima Burrill

    Wednesday 22nd September 8pm

    Sign up here to be notified when registration opens

    Spilt Milk is a social enterprise based in Edinburgh. Their mission is to support the work of artists who identify as mothers, and empower mothers in communities through artist-led activities. The group supports artist mothers through their international membership network and promote their members’ work through online exhibitions, events and publications.

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