Maternal Art Magazine – MAM is a new art magazine focusing on artists from around the world producing work about the maternal. The first issue, Stay At Home due out in June 2020 is a response by 24 artists to their experiences of working at home during the COVID-19 pandemic. The magazine aims to support artists through this challenging time as well as raising money for Women’s Aid*

MAM has been carefully curated to reflect a diverse range of responses and experiences by both established and emerging artists. Contributions include embroidered photographs by Jessa Fairbrother, paintings by Shani Rhys James and Jessica Timmis, collage work by Lauren McLaughlin, an interview with Paula Chambers who makes installations and sculptures about disrupted domesticity, a series of self-portraits, PRONIA by performance artist Nicola HunterKnitted Homes of Crime by Freddie Robins and exquisite paper-cuttings of matriarchs by Pippa Dyrlaga.  In photographs by Dawn Yow we see her children captured as lone figures entranced and lost within the emptiness of the landscape that surrounds them. Alke Schmidt’s watercolour drawings Pandemic Spring from her visual diary of the Coronavirus pandemic were inspired by the contrast between the grim record of coronavirus cases and deaths and the beautiful, life-affirming signs of spring everywhere in nature.

There is an interview with Helen Knowles founder of the Birth Rites Collection, meticulously staged domestic photographs by Sian Bonnell and emotionally charged responses; such as Laura Godfrey-Isaacs powerful diary drawings about her mastectomy. Penny Davis’s drawings depicting her intense experiences of solo parenting and Barbara Philipp’s visual journal intimately portraying the feelings of confinement, loss of physical connection and grief felt after the death of her father. Paula McCloskey’s Slip ( performance-walk and text) explores how early lockdown was simultaneously experienced as an enforced return to the conditions of early mothering, but because of the context and condition of the pandemic, also a time to reconfigure human and nonhuman entanglements. Jodie Hawkes mini magazine within the magazine is a LOCKDOWN EDITION! of her ongoing Playing Kate performance project. Pia Jaime’s work reimagines herself as a mother machine so that she can then take care of herself and Martina Mullaney has contributed her text “Usually she is disappointed” about the missing mother.

Marcia Michael whose practice challenges the presence of the black subject within the auspices of the family album has contributed her most recent series of photographs Before Memory Returns taken at night where her body in cultural mourning, became visible, at that moment just before sleep and memory returned: she needed to capture this moment, this time. Amy Dignam has contributed colourful and playful drawings made in the bath, her place of solitude during lockdown and Rachel Fallon explores ideas of reverse parenting and care for her elderly parents. Megan Wynne’s photographs see her reenacting birth with her children as willing collaborators. Lena Simic takes a walk in her local park in Everton, Liverpool and reflects upon feelings of sadness, loneliness, and climate change and wonders what the future may hold for her, her family and the planet.

Stay At Home is a response to the pandemic, the interruption, and anxiety that each day  we are all having to live with. MAM was born initially as a way to distract me from looking too often at the news and becoming depressed, a way to be creative, collaborate, communicate and engage with other artists and mothers during this crisis. MAM’s wish is that this first issue of the magazine will provide its readers with a small moment of joy during this international crisis. MAM: Stay At Home, has been produced at the kitchen table in-between the on-going drama of daily family life, the caring and coaxing of children to do their schoolwork, the cuddling of cats, cooking, clearing up and feeding the washing machine with yet more laundry.

-MAM Editor – Helen Sargeant

List of all contributors:

Sian Bonnell,  Paula Chambers,  Penny Davis,  Amy Dignam, Pippa Dyrlaga, Jessa Fairbrother, Rachel Fallon, Jodie Hawkes, Nicola Hunter, Laura Godfrey-Isaacs, Pia Jaime, Shani Rhys James, Paula McCloskey, Lauren McLaughlin, Marcia Michael, Martina Mullaney, Barbara Philipp, Freddie Robins, Helen Sargeant, Alke Schmidt, Lena Simic, Jessica Timmis, Megan Wynne, Dawn Yow

Birth Rites Collection:

Interview by Helen Knowles

Artist Contributors:

Ana Casas Broda, Natalie Lennard, Tal Regev

Supported by:

Birth Rites Collection, Desperate Artwives, Mothers Who Make, Maternal Journal, The Museum of Motherhood, M/other Voices, Procreate Project, Spilt Milk Gallery

Privately funded by: Helen Sargeant

To find out more:  go to the  Maternal Art project website

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