The exhibition Presence: The Figure in British Postwar and Contemporary Sculpture is held in the 13th century tithe barn at Messums West over the summer. It aims to explore the many ways in which artists have represented the human figure within the UK since 1945. Emerita Professor Christie Brown will be exhibiting a work from 2006-10 titled The Uncanny Playroom in which a playful group of characters engage with the viewer to challenge our ideas about identity, sculptural form and mixed media within the figurative canon.  In making The Uncanny Playroom the artist asked: could the use of other materials and found objects extend the symbolic meaning within figurative ceramic practice, and forge conceptual and contextual links between ceramic figuration and wider fine art practices? In considering this dialogue Brown created this uncanny figurative assemblage in which the surreal juxtaposition of objects could inspire imagined narratives which position the ceramic figure beyond the decorative.

The exhibition includes several major artists from the past 80 years including Henry Moore, Ralph Brown, Lyn Chadwick, John Davies, Lawrence Edwards, Elisabeth Frink, Antony Gormley, Nicola Hicks, Sean Henry and Rachel Whiteread.