Sculpture & Why I Create It.
Why did I choose Sculpture as a visual art? Probably because I’m crap at painting, and that includes interior and exterior, both of which I hate. No, at the absolutely most basic level, it’s because of the tangible nature of sculpture. It’s the ability to touch it, to immediately understand the dimension of it, the movement of it, the colour, light and shadow of it and possibly even the sound of it. All of those things.
And when you get to experience all of those things, to me at least, it can create a sense of awe and wonder, excitement. It’s like finding something brand new in the universe that you don’t understand. What’s it for?, what’s it’s purpose?, what does it mean?, honestly, the questions go on and on. And it’s not about being all serious, philosophical and arty, it’s more like, wow, fucking check that out, that’s cool as fuck.
The next obvious question, and why make sculpture in the first place?. Well, that’s a thing that has two reasons, I suppose. Firstly it’s about self expression. It provides me a creative outlet and keeps me out of the pub. Secondly it’s about telling stories. It’s about communicating with other people. It’s about telling stories, describing ideas and sending other messages that ordinarily I wouldn’t get the chance to do.
Some people do it with words. Some people do it with paint, and there’s no doubt countless other mediums that people use to express themselves. I’m sure they’re all doing it for more or less the same reasons as me. Anyway, one thing I try to do is be honest. I try to stay away from the wankfest that art can be from time to time. In fact, if you’re ever in an exhibition and you have to reach for a dictionary, that’s what I mean.
So, the particular styles of sculpture that I prefer to work in are, abstract expressionism, surrealism and cubism. I would like to point out that defining what art style actually is, is a minefield of art people. Honestly, don’t take it too seriously, think of it all in general terms, it’s easier that way.
The cubist thing, like my piece Breach, I think is a continuation of a style of art that I used to draw at school. I recall drawing bottles and being particularly focused on the definition of reflections from them and other bizarre twisted reflected shapes.
I was never one to try and blend those elements to create some realistic visual experience, why I don’t really know, but if I was having a guess it’s because I knew those reflections were real things in the real world and as such were definitive. It was more like drawing those items in the bottle rather than portraying them as reflections on it.
But I was a child then and and saw things in an absolute sense, I didn’t understand the property of infinite uncertainty that is the foundation of the universe as I understand it now. But you get that. Nowadays, in my own work, I see a common theme between cubism and abstract sculpture, insomuch as it is reductionist. It’s about trying to strip everything away that has any kind of redundancy until all you’re left with is the one single simple idea, word, shape or whatever. Then you start from that.
And then, moving away from that common ground, I see the abstract, or abstract expressionism if you want, to be very much different as to how I see and feel about the cubist style.
To me the abstract does fall into the idea of infinite uncertainty, insomuch as there is less or no rigidity in the style, with respect to interpretation, see Growth Rings. In fact, to me that’s one of the cool things about it. It is the degrees of freedom of interpretation that abstract expressionist sculpture presents to and provides people. If you like, it is an equal opportunity employer that lets everyone enjoy it is as much as anyone else, regardless of the direction that they come to it from. Does something get cooler than that? Probably not.
This then all goes back to a point I made earlier about my own personal experiences. Those degrees of freedom provide people the awe, wonder and excitement that I experience too. And those are in turn the very human reactions that I want people to experience with my sculpture. It is, in part, also about providing people with a type of entertainment to some extent, I suppose. It’s also awesome watching peoples reaction, absolutely fucking priceless sometimes. And then, of course, you get the inevitable question; what drugs were you on when you made that?
I suppose there’s one thing that people might not realise about the fate of the artist. We never get to experience that first WOW shock and awe moment. Speaking personally, once I’ve started a sculpture it doesn’t take long until I stop seeing it for what it’s going to be. It just becomes this thing that requires technical malarkey to happen to it to turn it into the thing I was thinking of.
Finally then to the idea of surrealism and the realistic surrealistic, see Sufferance. This is a style of sculpture that is absolutely nothing like the cubist and abstract styles mentioned already.
Generally speaking, I don’t see that there’s really much or any room for interpretation at all in this style of sculpture. They are things that are made for a very specific purpose. They tell a story that has already happened or is happening, see Sin Cerebro. Think of them more like a political or social commentary and then I’m sure you get the idea. But that doesn’t exclude the possibility of people making up their own political or social commentary, and that’s cool, but it doesn’t happen that often.
Now to some boring personal art malarkey. I used to be a member of Sculptors Queensland and did get an award one year. No it wasn’t a participation award. It was a sculptural award for a piece you will see in here, “You Me, Us ”. Also, back in 2017 I also was awarded the major award at Sculpture On The Edge in Queensland. That particular sculpture was “The Gatepost v2.0 ”
So there you go.
And if you got this far well done. As always, this information is likely to be revised in the near future, as this Crooked Timber website is a continuous work in progress, but don’t let that stop you having a look around.
I do not use Meta products, for obvious reasons.