About     ︎

Have you had a productive day?

2023, Single channel video, 7mins 38

Commissioned by The Serpentine Gallery, London.

‘From fungal infections to children playing with a spider, the interactions between lifeforms here are unidealised, taking place in car parks and living rooms, as much as in ‘wild’ environments.‘
Text: Fiona Glen

Solo exhibition, Castlefield Gallery, Manchester (2023)

‘Pests, piss and frog genitalia. From the xenomorphic strangeness of quivering rat tail maggots and darting mosquito larvae to humour tales of intergenerational urination and the disarming security measures of human embryo preservation services, the works comprising El Morgan’s exhibition Tale of the Frozen Bits unfold a fragmentary yet intimately involving narrative of the biological, political and commercial traceries that undergird both the practices and popular imaginaries of fertility.’

Text: Jamie Sutcliffe, ‘Cruising the Coldscape: El Morgan’s Anecdotal Science Fictions

House of the Eight Eyes 

2021, Single Channel video, 5mins 41

Commissioned for Le Mostra della Laguna by Sale Docks, Venice (2021)

Travel up the nostrils to a house ruled by animals with eight legs, two eyes, long tongues and many sighs. Sex happens on Wednesdays. There is kinship here, along with killing. 


I am an artist and writer working with video, sculpture, printmaking and performance to explore our relationship with other animals. This has included serenading a spider, making a diamond from the dead creatures of the River Thames and embracing a giant green sea anemone. My illustrated book Gossamer Days: Spiders, Humans and Their Threads (Strange Attractor/MIT press, 2016) examines the history of the human uses of spider silk, from gun sights to sticky tunics via acoustic lures and royal underwear. It was chosen by The Guardian as one of their favourite books of the year. 

I was the child who loved to stroke slugs, and I continue to bring this sticky interest to the world around me. After moving through twelve studios over the past twenty years, I now work from my converted garage in the East Midlands, where I can spend time looking under logs in the garden and watching the silverfish in the downstairs toilet. I keep a wasp’s nest on the windowsill beside me, next to a framed letter from David Attenborough and a beautiful poem about Marlene Dumas written by my friend Miranda Peake. 

El Morgan (London, 1978). Recent exhibitions: Sampler (Performance, Raven Row, 2024);Have you had a productive day? (Commission, The Serpentine Gallery, 2023) Naissance (Group exhibition, Unit Gallery, London, 2023); Tale of the Frozen Bits (Solo, Castlefield Gallery, Manchester, 2023); le Mostra della Laguna (Group exhibition, Sale Docks, Venice, 2021); 100 ways to say we (Group exhibition, Venice Architecture Biennale, 2021). 
You are very welcome to get in touch with me through email (emorganweb [at] gmail.com) or instagram. I also have more videos to view on my vimeo site. 

👋️ Subscribe to Moments of Pleasure and recieve a new video and writing on creatures (human and nonhuman). There will be many legs, some stickiness, occasional cannibalism and a bit of gentle stroking. 


January 2024
Sampler: I will be giving a performance of images, storytelling and moving image at Raven Row Gallery, London, along with DJ Gribs, on 24th January. 

July 2023
The Serpetine Gallery have commissioned me to make a new film, Have you had a productive day? Click here to watch, with text by Fiona Glen

May 2023
My films ‘Ghosting’ and ‘Tale of the Frozen bits’ will be available to watch as part of Unit Gallery’s Naissance/Re-naissance exhibition, curated by Hettie Judah

March 2023
Thanks to Jamie Sutcliffe for this wonderful writing ‘Crusing the coldscape’ about my show ‘Tale of the Frozen bits’

March 2023
My essay on printmaking and death swamps has been published in Oceans, the latest from MIT/Whitechapel documents, edited by Pandora Syperek and Sarah Wade

February 2023
‘Tale of the frozen bits’ is open, you can watch a short video about the exhibition here

January 2023
I’m so excited to share that my solo show ‘Tale of the frozen bits’ will open on February 12th at Castlefield Gallery in Manchester. Details here: Tale of the Frozen Bits

October 2022
My video ‘The house of the eight eyes’ is on show in Visions in the Nunnery at Bow Arts, selected by Patrick Goddard.

September 2022
My short story ‘Seasickness’ has been published in the new Ark issue of Dark Mountain journal.

June 2022
I will be sharing new writing and video work at the Horse hospital in Escaping Landscapes organised by Prototype publishers and Salon A.

November 2021 - May 2022
New video work, ‘The house of the eight eyes’ is on show at Sale Docks, Venice in Le Mostra della Laguna, in collaboration with the Goethe Institute until May 2022.

November 2021
My performance as a wasp building a house is in the online exhibition ‘100 ways to say we’ as part of the Goethe Institute’s ‘Performing architecture’ programme for the Venice Biennale.

August 2021
I have been awarded an Arts Council DYCP grant to develop my work on ecology and care. So excited to get started! I’ll be creating new work over the next seven months, with the aim of developing my second book.

July 2021
My video ‘Animal Tool Behaviour (ATB)’ is available to view online as part of Eastside Projects summer show, along with some amazing works by other artists.

June 2021
‘Magnificent Sex’ and ‘Tips for Flourishing’ are on show at Vivid Projects and online as part of Black Hole Club’s celebration of Doom. Both works can also be viewed on my Vimeo page.

May 2021
My exhibition text for ‘Come to Naught’, a group exhibition curated by Kristian Day at Kingsgate Project Space is available to read online alongside images of the show.

April 2021
Pequenas Vidas (Little Lives). Thanks to Valeria Melchiorre for inviting me to be part of a beautiful online exhibition in the Argentinian journal Zancada, alongside poets, writers and artists all interested in the small, less visible creatures.

The feminist theorist Federica Timeto has written about my work in her new book Bestiario Haraway: per un femminismo multispecie (Mimesis: Milan, 2020) an exploration of Donna Haraway’s writing through natural-cultural stories.
©El Morgan