Julia McKinlay West Yorkshire, United Kingdom
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I am an artist and PhD researcher based in Leeds. My PhD is with Leeds Beckett University in collaboration with Yorkshire Sculpture International. Working across print, sculpture and drawing, I use materials and processes that mimic events in nature. Molluscs, human-made geology and metamorphic forces in the print studio are current areas of investigation.

Acid soaked steel molluscs populate my work at the moment. Their etched surfaces contain organic systems and pathways. Snail standards coated in slag rise up from the ground, the synthetic geology interacts with an ordered world of coils, ovals and voids. Molten slag has erupted from the furnace, frothing and flowing over and inside the shell of a now extinct organism, leaving behind a fossil remnant. Like a soft bodied creature, my work takes the form of collections that expand and contract with the space available to it.

My work evolves from research into natural history collection and display, and overlaps between nature and processes in the studio. I make installations and works in series that represent semi fictional environments inspired by visits to museums, quarries or foundries. My practice fuses sculpture and print processes. I pull prints directly from parts of sculptures and gather a two-dimensional version of the work. My prints are sculptures within a narrow space.

Like the carrier snail Xenophora, I gather objects from my experiments with materials like steel, slag, cement, inks and other oily substances display them in groups and formations that encourage narratives to grow between them.


Coiled in a Single Plane, Skimmed and Separated, Installation, 2019


Mollusc Series, Print , 2019, £200 per print


For sale

Feeling the Underside, Artist Book/Print, 2019, £300

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For sale

Projects and exhibitions



13/09/2019 — 29/09/2019

A group exhibition of early career artists from the UK and Japan working in sculpture. The exhibition was hosted by Index Festival, Leeds. Organised by Julia McKinlay Artists: Jon Kipps, Julia McKinlay, Hiroko Nakajima, Eiko Soga, Lauren Wilson.

Gallery House, Leeds Details
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