Monday, 29 June 2015



 Night Waves, mixed media, 85 x 40 46cm
"My work always creates a dialogue between sculpture, painting and drawing. The explosions in my new work ...respond to the piercing beauty and ravaged landscapes of my home in Menorca". Kenneth Draper

What is the best use for photography? 
Photographing other pictures says David Hockney  in The Artist's Eye: looking at pictures in a book. It is the only time it can be true to its medium, because, like the photographs that result, paintings are flat two-dimensional objects. People and landscapes and nearly everything else in the universe, are uncompromisingly three dimensional, full of knobbles and curves and inlets and complexity.

Nowhere is this more true than in trying to use a photograph to capture the beauty and strength and freshness of sculpture. Sculpture demands not just a visual but a physical engagement, only coming to life when you walk round it. You cannot see it all at once. It's like chasing shadows.

Night  Waves is displayed on a white plinth, roughly at table height.At first I took time to linger on the complexity and beauty of the base; then the dancing curls and whirling curves, captured and poised as lightly and briefly as birds or waves. At the top is magical space. The artist talks of 'frayed edges' in his works. Here they fizz and vibrate as if solid metal melts into the surrounding air.
Wohl Central Hall. Royal Academy of Art

To feature this work - and a few others - I have broken my rule of never writing about art which is only accessible by paying to see it. This summer's Royal Academy of Art Summer Exhibition, a selection co ordinated by Michael Craig Martin, is the best I've seen,  It starts in the courtyard where visitors are confronted by a towering formation of steel ‘clouds’, created out of 8,000 tetrahedrons by Conrad Shawcross, before climbing Jim Lambie’s kaleidoscopic stairs leading up to the Main Galleries. which I'll feature in my next blog.

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