friday new art finds: Antony Gormley

i'm thrilled to have a friday new art finds this week! thank you Margaret for thinking of me and my little wood assemblages when you sent me Antony Gormley's link.

this body of work consists of 'standing figures made of cast iron variable blocks'. i never feel comfortable 'lifting' too much written information about someone from another website without permission, so please visit this link to find out the specifics on this body of work and here to read his bio on his website.

a brief bio: Antony Gormley was born in London in 1950 and received a degree from Trinity College, Cambridge in archaeology, anthropology and history of art. Upon completing his undergraduate studies, he traveled for three years in India before returning to enroll in Londonʼs Central College of Art, Goldsmithʼs College, and the Slade School of Art. Gormleyʼs works have been the subject of group and solo exhibitions in numerous, international museums and galleries as well as international art festivals such as the Venice Biennale and Kassel Documenta 8. He was awarded the Turner Prize in 1994, was made an Order of the British Empire (OBE) in 1997 and has been a Royal Academician since 2003.

it wasn't until i went to his website that i realized i knew his work. i'm sure most of you would recognize the forms standing alone in water. all looking like an army of spooky talismen, mute and void of anything but perhaps an unwelcome murmur of bleak messages. maybe you don't feel that when you see them but i do. they kind of creep me out.

so when i saw these wood sculptures and delved further into his site i found more photos that made my mouth drop open. this one to the left, 'Bodies at Rest II', while tumorous and slightly repulsive, is also beautiful and irresistible. i imagine it is cold, hard. unpleasant to touch but all i want to do is embrace this curled up form. lay right next to it and hold on. as too do his above figures intrigue me to no end. they are complicated and busting with energy. bionic almost. these forms are so full of life that they pierce me right through the monitor screen. they are like a beautiful animal that i cannot wait to touch and pet, yet wild enough to scare me from handeling.

and below, domain field. this is where the magic happens in art. true magic. how is it possible that these 'stick' assemblages that seemingly do not touch each other ~ defy gravity and space and claim just enough territory to exist? i love them. they are truly otherworldly. gentle and yet menacing. i love it when art excites me and confuses me and leaves me with the same sort of awe and wonder that is usually reserved for children. i hope you enjoy this weeks friday new art finds! if you have an artist in mind who you think i might not be aware of please send me a link and i will mention your blog/website too.

Domain Field, 2003
Antony Gormley


donauluft said...

I really enjoy this week friday new art finds! it´s incredible. Not so much time yet, look forward to come back and visit the links. Thank you for sharing!

Margaret Ryall said...

Very interesting work with the figure. I love to find a new artist to explore and this one is new to me. Friday art finds is a great idea Paula. I think it is so important to see the work of other artists in order to place your own work in a broader context.

neva gagliano said...

oh, what fabulous "people" here..

Leslie Avon Miller said...

Thanks for this. I love figurative work.

Lynda Lehmann said...

He's a wonderful find and I have not been familiar with his art; it IS very poignant and compelling, as you pointed out. Totally fascinating figures, just haunting.

I just read your (extended) bio and I wish you all the luck with your art journey!!

paula said...

hey thanks for checking this out and commenting lynda. appreciate you delving into my archives too!

Karen said...

I see these wonderful works and I can imagine him sitting with a piece of wire,stone or wood and thinking them up. One bit atop another, assemblages not unlike your wood bits... Beauty and strength from an artists mind!

Cynthia said...

Thanks for the Friday find, Paula! I was not familiar with this artist, but his work is amazing! I especially like the one called "Domain Field" and I think it's interesting how it is so airy and ethereal, whereas the ones at the top are weighty and solid -- or almost. A master of his material to get such different effects. Great find!

paula said...

yeah karen, wouldn't you love to be a fly on the wall when he's dreaming these up?
cynthia...love it you didn't implode (inside joke). glad you enjoyed the find and were turned on to a new artist. funny thing those wood ones...they are as tall as a person! can you imagine???