Katrina Palmer Is The National Gallery’s 2024 Artist In Residence

Katrina Palmer, a London-born and based artist, is the National Gallery’s new Artist in Residence for 2024, it was announced today.

The award is a collaboration with the Contemporary Art Society, generously supported by Anna Yang and Joseph Schull, who will acquire an artwork produced during the residency for this year’s Partner Museum, Touchstones Rochdale.

Palmer’s work explores a range of spaces from island quarries to offices, prisons to coastal landscapes. Using objects, sound, writing and drawing she investigates the possibilities of sculpture through text and language. Previous projects have engaged with concepts of absence and dislocation within historic sites.

Palmer has been invited to respond to the collections of the National Gallery and Touchstones Rochdale. She will begin her residency in December 2023 and will work over the course of a year in the National Gallery’s on-site artist’s studio, benefiting from the close proximity to the collection and archives. This will culminate in a publication and a presentation in autumn 2024, and an acquisition to Touchstones Rochdale.

The jury found the way that Palmer has previously embedded herself within sites to develop her projects as an appealing prospect for both the National Gallery and Touchstones Rochdale. The panel consisted of Sorcha Carey, Director, Collective, Edinburgh; Rosie Cooper, Director, Wysing Arts Centre, Cambridge; Caroline Douglas, Director, Contemporary Art Society; Sarah Hodgkinson, Senior Curator – Collections and Exhibitions, Touchstones Rochdale, Rochdale and Liz Mytton, Director, Theatre in Flow, Rochdale; Elizabeth Price, Artist and Professor at the School of Art, Kingston University; and chaired by Daniel F. Herrmann, Curator of Modern and Contemporary Projects, the National Gallery, London.

The Artist in Residence programme invites a mid-career artist to develop their practice in the context of the museum and to benefit from unparalleled access to the Gallery’s collection. The partnership between the National Gallery and Touchstones Rochdale allows the artist to respond not only to one of the greatest collections of paintings in the Western European tradition, but also an outstanding collection in the borough of Rochdale covering a wide range of subjects, from visual art to archaeology, social history to costume and textiles. In a move to enrich regional collections, the residency enables a work by Palmer to travel to Rochdale, where it will be acquired by the Contemporary Art Society for Touchstones Rochdale’s permanent collection. 

Palmer is the fourth Artist in Residence to be chosen since the launch of the Gallery’s new Modern and Contemporary Programme, following the appointment of Rosalind Nashashibi in 2019, Ali Cherri in 2021 and Céline Condorelli in 2022.

Katrina Palmer says: ‘I’m thrilled to have been selected as the National Gallery’s Artist in Residence. The spectacular imagery and narratives of the collection and the various movements of power at play are as intriguing as they are challenging. The prospect of working in the context of these artworks is genuinely exhilarating.’

Caroline Douglas, Director of the Contemporary Art Society, says: ‘Now going into its fourth year, this residency project has established itself as a unique opportunity for an artist to engage with two UK institutions of very different scale and circumstances. The programme at Touchstones Rochdale has been very impressive for many years, championing women artists in particular and leading the way in engaging with its communities. I am confident that Katrina Palmer will find it an enriching experience to spend the coming year exploring all the possibilities the residency offers.’ 

Mark Doyle, Director of Arts, Heritage and Wellness at Your Trust/Touchstones Rochdale: ‘We’re delighted to be working with the National Gallery on its Artist in Residence programme. Katrina’s approach to sculpture challenges accepted norms, and her interest in memory and absence compliments Touchstones’ work to uncover the stories that aren’t currently being told by Rochdale’s collections. We’re looking forward to seeing how our collections and archives will help to inspire a new piece of work by an internationally acclaimed artist.

Lisbeth Thalberg
Lisbeth Thalberghttp://lisbeththalberg.wordpress.com
Journalist and artist (photographer). Editor of the art section at MCM. Contact: art (@) martincid (.) com
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