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GTC x LICA Launchpad: Liana Obradovic

Blog by Liana Having just graduated from Lancaster University in the Summer I’ve been slowly trying to find my feet while I adjust to non-student life. I’ve found Morecambe to be an appropriate place to centre this transition, be it psychological or physical. It’s a place full of interesting people and pockets of intrigue, protected by the distant mountains across its iconic bay.

Much of my research has centred around the Bay area, with most of my degree work forming narratives around Silverdale’s little-known cave systems and the ominous presence of Heysham Nuclear Power Station as its mysterious neighbour. The themes of pilgrimage and ritual have shaped the foundations of my practice since I started immersing myself in the strange landscapes here, and they have been continued by the night-school sessions on ritual, hosted by our own neighbours: Jewellers. As the nights grow darker and more sinister, it has been a great relief to explore this on cold evenings in a group of like-minded people.

Currently my practice has mainly involved searching for wood! Carving by hand has been something I have always returned to; gnawing away at the material to shape it into odd, alien-like forms really immerses me in an arachnid/insect underworld which I have become obsessed with throughout my practice. Embodying a creature of the underworld through reductive processes of repetitive peeling- away of layers of growth teaches me so much about the organic material that I manipulate. At times it can feel a bit sacrilegious! But the commitment to these strenuous and physically taxing processes reinforces the resonance of learning the nature of found things. It requires patience and a dedication to working with material far older and wiser than myself, and brings about lots of thinking about the ancient world and what stories might be told through the strange worship of local materials.

Moving onwards from my degree work, I’m facing the challenge of deciding which languages to keep; both in the narratives I make and the visual language of my practice is a risky process of sacrifice and subsequent growth. One of the most significant successes from my degree work was the ‘discovery’ of peculiar eggs which have become a kind of accidental series; I’m working on making one on a much larger scale than before, requiring the use of a carving hatchet on a large chunk of local sycamore. Having the confidence to work bigger is challenging, particularly when navigating the work/life balance which can put pressure on me to sink inwards and return to a smaller, much shyer scale.

I’m hoping to start engaging with Morecambe’s audience more, having now shown some of my work to audiences here that perhaps aren’t too familiar with work with a such an odd nature of mine. Hearing local people’s responses of disgust, wonder, excitement, and an eruption of imagination is inspiring, and I’m looking forward to developing an installation that will explore this relationship further.


The LICA x GTC Launchpad is funded by Santander Bank and Good Things Collective, as part of a programme with Lancaster University encouraging responsible and innovative enterprise. The participants, a mix of Lancaster fine art BA graduates and Good Things Collective members, get studio space, their first art commissions, business support, and professional mentoring over the course of 12 months.



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