Not a Decorator: performance artist Lisa Watts reveals the magic of everyday objects

Performance artist Lisa Watts reveals the beauty in everyday domestic items in her latest piece, Not a decorator…

A run of performances taking place at Southampton’s John Hansard Gallery over a two week-period, Not a decorator… transforms domestic, DIY and gardening materials, such as kitchen towel, grease-proof paper, bin liners and bird seed into magical objects.

Revealing the sublime in the mundane, Lisa's’ eclectic performances present alternative uses for these loaded materials, in turn, destroying the function or the job they were created for.

A roll of kitchen towel, rather than mopping up spillages and wiping mucky cheeks, becomes a thing of fragile beauty as the entire roll is unfurled and balanced on its end. Plastic bags, washing baskets, garden trellises, tape measures, cotton wool balls, wrapping paper… are all transformed to live another life.

First exhibited and performed at SIA Gallery (Sheffield) and Castlefield Gallery, Manchester in 2017, Not a decorator… builds on Lisa Watts’ practice that spans two decades, with a core of disciplines of performance, sculpture, photography and video. You can discover more of her work at

Performances of Not a decorator… take place daily, Tuesday to Saturday, from 10 to 24 November at the John Hansard Gallery, part of the University of Southampton.


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