Artist research- Martin Coates

The artist Martin Coates likes to bring the conscious and unconscious world together. A lot of his work focuses on antromorphism and the way in which as humans we find comfort in finding a reflection of ourselves in everything. His work brings these ideas together through his attempt to become an animal.


The piece Dawn chorus is a video installation. The dawn chorus itself is a springtime morning call that male birds will do to defend territory and attract mates. Coates’s idea was to recreate the chorus using human voices. A birdsong is a interesting parallel to human language such as the repetition, masculinity, endurance etc. is reflected in how as humans we use language.


Birds are a main feature in Coates work due to the interest in the cross over of interspecies boundaries. Birds such as parrots mirror us and their use of nesting etc displays a similar culture to our own. However, Coates believes animals aren’t a version of us they are there own autonomous beings, to see the natural behaviour of animals in relation to us completely opaque’s the specialities of the animal itself.



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