23th April – 12th May 2018
‘They Too’ considers the beauty held within the overlooked: Discarded driftwood found on the edge of the Thames in Limehouse. The burnt ‘negatives’ left behind by the molten bronze. The bronze fragments that spilled from the crucible. The vulture, infamous as ugly scavenger of the animal kingdom.
The process of bronze casting is in itself overlooked; by visually breaking down the process, artist invites audience to look beyond the final, ‘untouchable’ sculpture. Visitors are encourages to question the identity of bronze, their role within the gallery space, and to step over the barrier between voyeur and art through permission to reach out and stroke the bronze vulture. The slow removal of patina through the communal motion of touch reveals this connection, and simultaneously encourages compassion for this endangered creature.
Bronze as a fluid medium at the hands of the artist, lets the form of the wood and the nature of the molten metal lead the final aesthetic, allowing them to combine organically. This collaboration with the accidental gives rise to contemplation of the value we place on objects, and the value inherent in bronze as a material, giving new life to the forgotten wood.
Inspiration for this communal appreciation of the bronze casting process came from Abigail’s fellowship to Nepal and India, two cultures where bronze casting forms the backbone of communities. In Patan, old town of Nepal, and the Dhokra tribes of India, lost-wax casting is a process that connects everyone- bringing into the open a process usually kept behind foundry doors in the U.K.