Harriet Bowman


Harriet Bowman works between writing and sculpture shifting between a material-led practice and written works that accompany, are performed alongside or stand in for sculpture.

Harriet Bowman is a multidisciplinary artist based in Bristol born in North Devon. Bowman’s practice takes the form of writing, sculpture, audio, performance and installation pieces. Recent exhibitions include Maybe they had an urgent call, VOLT, Eastbourne, All Round-er (sad sale), Spike Island (project space), Bristol; putting my foot down, OUTPOST, Norwich; Text included TACO! Dream times free publication. Bowman was awarded Arts Council England DYCP grant in 2021; Parenting Artist Residency, Cow House Studios, Wexford, 2022, and is currently working towards a solo show at Exeter Phoenix, Exeter. She has recently been nominated for a Henry Moore Foundation Artist Award 2023.

Vessels made from ceramic and smelted car window glass that become hybridised forms of cars with breasts and muscular animal legs. Bowman is looking at the female body as a vessel to carry, to nurture and to feed, a multi-purpose vehicle. The car is a recurring motif that comes from visiting car shows, photographing tyre marks on roads and writing in the driver’s seat while her child sleeps.

In her writing she focuses on non-human character development, giving human qualities to inanimate or micro-organisms to build relationships to other life forms that could exist in an alternate world. The writing is punctuated with detailed descriptions of materials and their processes, for example the tanning process of leather that goes on to form a car seat.