Brancaster Chronicle No. 82: Alexandra Harley Sculptures

Rraff (view 1)

Artist’s Statement

Adaxka (wood and paint, h56cm w161cm d137cm)

Two highly polished planks are lifted off the ground by slim, delicate lengths of painted wood. The gently carved and solid wood planks are not machined, there is a gentle undulating surface which contrasts with the slim, organic branches and the bark of the tree is evident at the edge. These sticks are raw lengths with a collective strength enabling the lift. The planks are not inert, they gather the painted branches, gathering them from a broad spread and forcing them together through holes, constricting them, holding a tight grip before releasing them again. The symbiotic relationship of both sets of elements is vital, they rely on each other and neither can work without the other. The focus of the sculpture is the centred constriction, the sense of the painted components working upwards and creating the lift by the combined action. The blue colour enhances this lift by taking away the grounded sense of the tree and creating a more ethereal and floating idea.

Zolemba (wood and paint, h62cm w115cm d46cm)

I used a bandsaw to cut through small cross section logs, not with straight geometric and rather harsh lines, but using an organic and gentler line, less regimented and often deliberately off kilter. This way I have been able to reveal the internal make-up of the wood: the rings, grain, colour, and form. The ‘planks’ made are separated, re-positioned back together, not necessarily in their original position with the wonky cuts meaning the boards do not fit tightly and there are visible and significant clefts in the structure.  This method of construction allows to me to create forms across the sculpture with an openness that would be impossible using one piece of wood. Ensuring that the component parts of the sculpture are correctly positioned and held in the right place from all angles is crucial to the spatial relationships that are formed across the sculpture. My sculpture is abstract, seeking to convey a sense of movement through the physical interpretation of a brief and momentary fragment in time. With an internal energy pulsing through the complex constructions, these sculptures evade a single analysis. The positioning and the relationships of the elements define the movement of the sculpture. The space between the elements is significant and these airways that are created through the sculpture play a huge and physically active role in the sculpture.

Ajija (wood, h59cm w72 d39cm)

For Ajija, small logs were cut deliberately off kilter, rather than with harsh straight geometric lines. The ‘planks’ were separated and re-positioned back together, but not in their original order.

Rraff (wood, paint, rope and staples, h 51cm w60cm d56cm)

Individual elements of Rraff have been kerfed and stapled into position, i.e. cut almost through in several places creating a space that is eliminated when it is stapled. All the parts are constructed by tying with string.

Rraff (view 2)

Rraff (view 3)

Rraff (view 4)

Rraff (view 5)

Rraff (view 6)

Rraff (view 7)

Zolemba (view 1)

Zolemba (view 2)

Zolemba (view 3)

Zolemba (view 4)

Zolemba (view 5)

Zolemba (view 6)

Zolemba (view 7)

Ajija (view 1)

Ajija (view 2)

Ajija (view 3)

Ajija (view 4)

Ajija (view 5)

Adaxka (view 1)

Adaxka (view 2)

Adaxka (view 3)

Adaxka (view 4)

Adaxka (view 5)

41 comments
  1. Mark Skilton said:

    Hi Alex. Can we have some dimensions please?

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    • harleysculpture said:

      Adaxka h56 w161 d137, Ajija h59 w72 d39, Zolemba h62 w115 d46, Rraff h51 w60 d56

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  2. noelajamesbewry said:

    Loved these works Alex! I particularly connected to ‘Adaxha’ and ‘Zolemba’ which could very well have something to do with the colour you have used. It defines the structure and hence the space to my eyes, and just adds character (in the personality sense, if that’s not too weird a way of describing a sculpture) .
    Will look some more and comment later.

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  3. harleysculpture said:

    Thanks Noela. Colour has become increasingly important largely to do with some of the discussions surrounding the laminations in Tim’s laminations. I felt the need to create a homogeneity and reduce the impact of the combination of the tool marks with the grain of the wood

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  4. Saul Greenberg said:

    With reference to ‘Rraff’, Alexandra said ‘…kerfed and stapled into position,’
    This is brutal stuff, Can we get some detail images? The violence of the linkage revealed by zooming in on the photos is reminiscent of Is this worse Goya!

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    • harleysculpture said:

      I was not expecting anyone to be upset by the ‘brutality’ . Why is kerfing worse than forging steel? I have never been mentioned in the same sentence as Goya before

      Liked by 1 person

      • Saul Greenberg said:

        Not upset by the brutality at all Alexandra, intrigued rather and inspired, there’s passion here not seen in Adaxka, Zolemba and Ajija .
        What’s not apparent in the photos posted is the way ‘Rraff’ is put together. I’d like to be able to post detail images referencing what i am talking about.
        You have chopped up the body of a branch and put it back together with staples, re configuring a natural form into….another natural form, Frankenstein stylee.
        The metal staples, stabbed into the wood and left very apparent, the rope binding the wooden elements, kerfed brutal tight is my Goyaesque.(the second time:)
        Probably the wrong forum for posting ‘feelings’ about Art but plenty of formalists hereabouts, they’ll sort it out.

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  5. tony smart said:

    Alex
    The debate around Tim’s sculptures left the reality of the material being questioned…
    Was the surface too large ..was the edge not long enough ? etc… This suggesting a ‘ lack of reality ‘ in the ‘form ‘ or was it the material itself being unresponsive ?
    Moving on to my enjoying your blue sculpture “Adaxka” and marvelling at just how, with such limited means ,such a large area of floor and space above ,it is so seemingly to be held so convincingly.
    Whilst wondering what sort of twigs they are, came opposing images of apple twigs versus plywood. One full of structure in varying stages of growth held along its length and articulated subtly at the growth intervals, joints in singles as the length pushes out into space. Then ,thinking the obvious in respect of the band- sawn sections in another of your sculptures , and the sympathetic direction changes made along and across the grain/structure, the question becomes, not as I first thought, nature versus man-made, but am I? are we? completely conditioned by nature and its reality, and once the form of the man-made sheet , the rectangle , is disturbed , what is disturbed …is its reality.
    So , you {Alex] remind us, where we come from …and on what foundations are our seeing and believing.

    But another question arises…Why did Smith and Caro, who both used flat sheet material , want to ‘ present ‘ , as pictorial,
    over riding the ‘ edge-on ‘ view.
    When Caro went further than ‘ front on ‘, the object, the ‘ box ‘ say, came with it to make the sheet ‘ real ‘. Thus tying it in to something we already know.

    Interestingly, over on John Bunker’s exhibition of new collages , comes the ‘ reality ‘ of certain parts that comprise the margins. This is noticeable when the gusto and force of the main arena is turned down in volume , that edge/surround feels to drop back.??…are they related ?

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    • harleysculpture said:

      Smith began life as a painter which may account for the pictorial emphasis in his work. He also constructed much of his work flat on the ground, welded into position before it was raised upright. Many of his drawings were also made as silhouettes. Caro worked from paintings, Christ descending from the cross.
      By re-laminating the wood cut by bandsaw, (Ajija + Zolemba) I have a far less dense /opaque series of elements but there is a directional aspect, again something we discussed with the edges in Tim’s sculpture.

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  6. John Bunker said:

    Really enjoying how Zolemba comes across as at least three or even four distinct sculptures yet each view reenforces Zolemba’s overarching distinct singular sculptural identity. The natural qualities of your materials seem to lead the way, even when colour is applied. Tony has hit on something when he notes how Adaxka seems to be activating space above and below it; or there is a feeling of being made conscious of space pushing down from above but its an exquisite sense of pressure, like a silence before a storm, particularly in Zolemba. I don’t know how, but the colour seems to heighten this sensation. Mesmerising!

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  7. Adaxka has two very diverse elements whereas the others use different joining and binding materials in more understated ways. This one for me is the most exciting. I enjoy the obvious finesse of it all: the considered see-sawing, swaying and delicacy of Ajija and the all or nothing of Rraff – natural materials are seductive as a gainsaid, even when chopped and reassembled with a mildly disturbing approach; this and Adaxka do not meet the ground on an edge which also gives the others a poised feel which maybe…maybe tips them towards the tasteful. Zolemba has a remarkable balance which seems highly counterintuitive considering the lean (an aerial view would have been useful) and the colour is quite something – what a choice. Having got to know Alex’s work I like the way she uses so many different materials and responds to their innate potential to transform these into sculpture. My question is – with Adaxka in mind – would a more dominant amount of the second material introduce a potentially disruptive element which would compel something “jolt-y”? The bindings are not neutral so I wondering if more could be made of them. In Rraff I am picking up an almost Japanese-like poetic – the silence in the thunderclap – highly pressured quality. The poised-ness gives a sense of the sanguine at times and I am just wondering about a sardonic intrusion. Or is that the result of a screen viewing which is a frustrating anaesthetic that we are all suffering with?

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    • harleysculpture said:

      I feel Adaxka is a natural progression from sculpture I have made before and with Ajija and Zolemba here. The apple lengths, while still making the connections, have become the dominant feature not least because of the colour. Colour has become increasingly important, or rather, finding a way of unifying the material. The blue in Adaxka I feel is jolt-y and certainly that was something I was happy to feature but increasing this may be limited by weight, there will come a point where it cannot hold itself. Similarly the ties in Rraff, very obvious and counter to the direction of the material, I wanted a visual stop. With Rraff too, the kerfed parts in silhouette are rounded and perhaps ‘soft’, not necessarily the result that Saul sees, and having an obvious and distinct junction rather than a flow of material through the sculpture. I love the ‘silence in the thunderclap’

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  8. tim scott said:

    Alex – I suppose it was inevitable that I would be most interested in the ‘split’ wood (Ajija) photos
    Two, for me, important factors come out of the bandsawing of the log part: one, the sense of direction it imparts to the part; and two,the way it reveals an inside to outside relationship; how the core affects the surface, like opening up a fruit or a solid vegetable. I am sure that you can explore those qualities further.
    An interesting thought is: what happens at the end of the log where the bandsawn meets the cross sawn ?

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    • harleysculpture said:

      I have managed to cut ‘wonky’, the flat planes of the saw cut are not geometric or at all rigid; nor are they consistent along the piece of wood. Reassembling the pieces out of their original order enables further disruption with the end grain ends are not in line with each other. I haven’t had to and choose not to deal with a great lump of end grain. The bark/edge has a distinctive directional line, this seems more apparent in the photos. Something in my brain is editing out some visual info in front of the piece. Bandsawn and cross sawn were for me, just too visually disturbing which is why I set to with the stain on Zolemba.

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  9. Mark Skilton said:

    I do not like the painted sculpture “Zolemba”. For me the paint is concealing rather than unifying. Is it wood? Where does the grain go? Has it been cut along the grain or across the grain?etc, etc. None of this information is available and the real meaning of the work is concealed. The sculptural meaning of all of these works is in the material.
    One of the reasons for doing these chronicles is to see how others might do something that might shed some light on my own work. I spend a lot of time building meaning into my sculpture through working and reworking extensively. Alex starts with the meaning already built into the material and her task is to reveal that meaning rather than remake it.
    A branch is a known thing and we are all subconsciously aware of the complexity of that knowing; the biology, the time,the seasons and sunlight that brought it into being. Yet each branch is different visually from another. An almost overwhelming interweaving of different meanings. Alex works on the uniqueness of each piece, doing just enough to reveal its meaning, cutting down the length rather than across the grain to reveal structure, holding pieces apart rather than together, making a feature of each small twig and knot. If these pieces were worked more extensively, all would be lost and the material would become generic.
    Alex has worked these pieces with a lot of sensitivity, making works of a deceptively simple charm ,which belies a.profound and complex reality: as Hilde observed they are the sculptural equivalent of a Haiku, particularly Adaxka.
    Whether these pieces are abstract or not is open to debate, but interestingly l don’t think it matters as they have their own unique interpretation of reality.

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    • Emyr Williams said:

      You can see the saw marks on one of the planes – the cutting is an artificial intrusion, the wood could have been stained through natural means, impurities could have been present. I appreciate the sentiment of being true to the inherent meaning of the wood but I am not convinced that such a sentiment can be made a priori. The colour does seem to be with the wood rather than on it as the blue breathes with the grain coming through. It does unify, but is it too quick?. My earlier question was related to this point in a way. Once the decision was made to paint it, why assume then, that one colour would do that? That is the flip side of the integrity of the wood coin, surely? Why not two or more colours? some wood left untouched, something split or broken. These decisions could only occur if you went there first – you can’t close a door that wasn’t opened. The colour is rich and seductive in line with the generous bending forms which have a strong command of scale. The colour for me makes the work seem slightly smaller as it does unify things. Maybe another way of unifying through a more destructive act could have occurred…

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      • harleysculpture said:

        Adaxka has been painted and the paint most definitely sits on the surface, Zolemba is stained (multiple times), the colour soaking in. I believe if you were to stand in front of the work , you would ‘see’ the grain, you would have a clearer idea of the nature of the material. Is it possible that I might not want to reveal the meaning of the the material? Perhaps, as with Rraff for example, I want to use/test/experiment with it. As for a more destructive act, does burning count?

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  10. Mark Skilton said:

    The point I am trying to make is that by using a natural material, you are starting with a huge amount of visual complexity, which you are able to exploit very effectively; rather than spending a lot of time building it in if you were using a more generic material like steel or plywood; and that by painting it you cover it up which seems illogical and contrary to your sculptural purpose.

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    • harleysculpture said:

      Mark, you raise a to me, highly valuable point for discussion regarding colour in sculpture. wood offers a vastly different set of challenges than steel and as you rightly point out, there is a huge amount of visual complexity and, dare i say it, emotional engagement with this natural material. Thankyou for saying I exploit this effectively; I am trying to manipulate the material and work it in a less traditional manner. I do not want a highly polished lump which often does reveal the natural complexities, grain, knots, figure. I have felt
      in a bind sometimes in the studio. I have created a form -carved, split naturally or bandsawn- which has a set of tool marks in addition to the natural aspects inherent in the timber and sometimes these are in visual opposition to each other. As in Ajija,
      the bark provides a directional and containing aspect but the photos have highlighted this more than I anticipated. Zolemba is comprised of several timbers, this along with the making marks created a difficult to read sculpture with different elements reacting adversely to my intent. Using stain which has soaked in to the wood, I thought this might work, it would not take anything away from the natural material but would enable me to pull the sculpture together visually and effectively. I was concerned that the end grain would soak up more but this doesn’t seem to have happened. Painting the lengths of Adaxka was something else again, the paint does hide the surface but I believe that this takes little away from the natural material and I hope does create a different spatial awareness.

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  11. smart said:

    From Tony
    Hi Mark
    do you include Adaxka in this thought?…which is..that is what happens to wood when its characteristics disappear under a coat of paint….

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  12. tim scott said:

    Re: Mark;s and Tony’s comments above: this is an ancient discussion going back to the Egyptians or even before.

    What happens to the properties of clay or wax when it become plaster or bronze ? If the inherent qualities of a material are not wanted (fibreglass for example), something has to happen to it. If they are wanted, it is presumably for good sculptural reason. (or practical one).
    In other words, whatever you do to a material, or not, has to have a convincing sculptural purpose above all.

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  13. noelajamesbewry said:

    Hi Mark
    I feel in Adaxka and Zolemba Alex has used the natural qualities of wood to good effect and at the same time transformed the material by painting it.
    In Adaxka I am more aware of the complex elements in the twigs, my vision takes in the bends and spikes which, had they not been painted, might have just stayed as twigs and not become such exciting linear sculptural forms.
    The blue is in perfect contrast to the natural wood and also echoes some of the veining which is very satisfying.

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  14. Mark Skilton said:

    Sculpture is largely a process of transforming material from one state of reality to another sculptural reality. Adding paint or stain is a strong transformative influence, but not necessarily a sculptural one. In Ajija and Rraff the original material is exploited to create a new sculptural reality, the meaning of the work is generated by the sensitive relationship between the literalness of the material and its transformation, creating a new sculptural reality. In Adaxka the paint does not distract from the twigness of the sculptural elements; also not all of the elements have been painted. However I think that using colour to unify the disparate elements in Zolemba is a cop-out. I am not all that keen on unity anyway as long as some sort of coherence is present. The difference between the timbers sound quite exciting I am surprised that you did not embrace it as a disruptive influence, like Emyr is referring to above.

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    • noelajamesbewry said:

      I can see what you mean when you say adding paint is not necessarily a sculptural transformation but do you feel Zolemba works despite being painted?

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    • harleysculpture said:

      Right now I think colour can be sculpturally transformative. Paint, sitting on a surface can mask what is underneath. Stain is absorbed into the material. Oil on wood brings out the grain but does also intensify the wood and its woodyness. How do you feel about steel colour changes- Using bright steel as you work it but leaving it to the elements outside? what then is the best of that sculpture – the new bright, the halfway almost rusted, the uniform ish full ochre colour or perhaps the oil used to preserve it? I believe that the colour does influence how we perceive the work from the initial engagement to the revelling in being in front of something I wish I had made. There is a superficial aspect to colour, the bling colour that overlays a lot of contemporary work; I really spend a lot of time trying to get the final presentation right (as we all do). Had I used eg Barbie pink on Adaxka or Zolemba we would be having a very different conversation! I am prepared to change my mind!

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  15. smart said:

    This from Tony

    .”Sculpture is largely a process of transforming material from one state of reality to another sculptural reality.”
    I like this Mark . It is very clear.

    I started my looking at Alex’s new sculptures being attracted to the largest of them ADAXKA . It was seeing in it the order of events in both preparation and the rush to put it all together. The idea was there, the two planks and the holes and the twigs had been in her thinking perhaps back to when she made BRINDILLE in 2018…so I felt I was looking at strong making activity and here knowing when to stop The tightening of the branches in the holes and the obliging tensility of the branches lifting the whole, and the togetherness was complete.
    My mind then swung to RRAFF.
    What is so good about RRAFF ? ….It is in photos a real three dimensional work, which really has been worked . Worked in a way that says Alex is fishing, looking for something to integrate the branches by changing their configuration. Not accepting the form given but rebuilding on something that was perhaps initially only suggestive. This inventive response ,which must have been sustained over an extended period , has invested so much into this piece. This all suggests to me a very different approach .

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  16. Mark Skilton said:

    I think that I agree with your assessment of these two pieces. I was also drawn to the clarity of Adaxka and its strong”idea”. However, that is also where it ends. Strong ideas can be restrictive as well as clear. Rraff is mobile as an idea and can take you to many different routes and therefore seems to have more potential.

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  17. Alex, Do the extremities of Rraff cause a loss of energy in the way they end? I can see how the “internal” sections loop and twist. In fact, at what point does something become “external” and, is such a splitting of spatial realities an issue?

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    • harleysculpture said:

      I hope not! I did think about the thread creating a sudden stop but I had hoped that the wrapping itself would soften the visual impact of the literal end of the element/s. If I am understanding you correctly, a good sculpture will embrace and utilise the space within but the sculpture is not the edge of the spatial environment; it does not ‘frame’ the space contained. A good sculpture is the focus, it provides a gravitational pull, exerting a pressure on the space from within and externally.

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      • Yes, I see. Hard to tell from photos, absolutely. The “visual” energy in an artwork is latent, either in an active or dormant state. I feel that in order to get the energy active one has to be reciprocally active in the making. Could the understanding of the intent create dormancy, as the result is expected and the activeness becomes more inhibited?

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  18. smart said:

    From Tony

    Emyr says…”is such a splitting of spatial realities an issue ?”…
    Alex replies..”I hope not “….

    My question is …What does this “splitting” mean?

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    • Tony,
      Opening up the form to create such multiplicities of engagement is an exciting development in sculpture. It would seem any static quality would be a culmination and an exit point, a breather to then go back “in” from. I’m not sure if this is necessarily happening in this work as it’s not possible to see it spatially on a screen and I enjoy it’s pressures and tensions and from the images the string does what Alex says, I suppose. What I can also see, though, is a regularity of cut wood endings to the perceived forces of the curving, twisting, stacked sections which run through the work. The “internal” twists and loops never happen on the furthest extremities from the centre. Although it’s not about literal running lines – as this is one dimensional movement- such a curved section would (could) mean that any extremity ends in a diffuse way throughout its contours – simultaneously, and would connect with the action at the core rather than be an end phase. The splitting I refer to is the work feeling full of spatial pressures and tensions and also existing as a beautiful object. The more I look at it, the more I like it but is this a case of having your cake and eating it?

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  19. smart said:

    From Tony

    Emyr
    I wrote this yesterday but was waiting for a reply to my question.
    I see you are absolutely right, the opening up of the ‘form’, as you say, is exactly that.

    Tim’s fixings, glue and screws are, as near as, invisible. The whole of the parts are ‘loose’, free to move and be reshuffled at the will of the sculpture. The only issue arising, is the flat sheet that is left after all the cutting at the edge of the original sheet, creating new smaller sheet with now, asymmetric outline and much has been made of these edges.
    The thought I have had since would be to make the sculptures out of ‘strip’ material and abandon the flat plane.
    Alex’s fixings are multiple in nature.They are part of more interference with the wood from how it is originally to what it becomes. I don’t think about how Tim’s are made, but with Alex, how they are made, is right up there.
    She is literally transforming the materially almost totally, but not. Tim is straight into the positioning of the pieces to create, well, everything .Tim’s shaping is not dramatic overtly suggestive, the groupings ,and how they respond across and through the sculpture and is the trigger to the works three dimensionality. There is a busy-ness in Tim’s pieces.
    With Alex, most of the action is actual, not implied. The various physical intrusions into the material [a] change the shape of the original material and [b] penetrate the form of the material, opening, closing, twisting etc.etc. and particularly at the extremities .See how Emyr describes this. These intrusions are a foil to what would be a linear experience. She too creates groupings “Zolemba” and “Ajija” are actually both groupings. In fact these two are maybe no more than a group. Maybe there is something missing, it may be some other group to come on the scene and make life difficult? Or join the two together? By that I mean keep up the work of continually testing the spatiality of such physicality.
    Sculpture needs to continually test the credibility of its space and material.
    Alex has set the tenor of her sculptures and it shows when these machine made parts can’t contribute to this otherwise very physical experience. I think the choice of these identical joining parts {cocktail sticks] is not an extension to the range of choices, but feels anonymous.
    “Rraff” I like the most, but that is not important, except , it is more sculptural and more achieved as a whole.
    As Emyr is describing, the opportunity to move on with “Rraff” lies with the outer part of the U shape at the top of the sculpture.It has a natural form/detail. I don’t think there is enough there for a section so exposed, That U shape has not enough energy to bring it back to a dialogue with the lower sections. The twist in it is good ! It has a very strong physicality and because of that , all of it has to take part!Where all the stuff is, the overall shape, is very appropriate as it allows the dialogue, the space to be seen and does in itself create energy.

    Returning to Tim’s pieces, how different they are in their looseness, in their implied, well everything.
    And Alex’s , with them it’s the sheer physicality that allows us to enact and respond., feel the sculpture.

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    • Whilst I can appreciate how less wood in Tim’s work would obviate issues of any domineering planarity, I wonder if the introduction of even more fluidity of movement as the natural – even intended – outcome can be achieved with the means used at present (if it has not already been achieved, as the screen view is an insufficient gauge). I come back to the shift of scale mooted early on, if not in thickness, in extent across the plane and through the shaping dialogues?

      I agree the top half almost loop of Rraff seems a likely candidate to return the energy back into the work, but again it could well be somewhere else. Could that be ‘too’ obvious and have already have been rejected? Having readjusted the first of my paintings seen after several goes I was shocked at how small adjustments had such big consequences. For instance even the thickness of the string could play a factor. Alex is so good at bearing down on her materials and wringing expression out of them that these sort of decisions would be her bread and butter – should she feel these are issues to deal with.

      I am more intrigued to hear your thoughts on any perceived splitting point between active sculpture and passive object-ness. Is this an issue? Or is there a duality? It would seem to hinge a lot on how the sculpture meets or relates to the horizontal as that’s the tangible limit. I would draw a comparison with a feeling of “pictoriality” and what that means for a painting which deals with the rectangle.

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      • harleysculpture said:

        I think there is a need for the active and the passive in sculpture and in painting too. As I write this I realise that both are not just required, but are essential. In sculpture, an element held under tension may initially seem passive but this subdued appearance evaporates under scrutiny. The direction of force, (which does not have to be aggressive but I think the language may be), its effect and how it is affected, the sense of that element across the sculpture, it is this duality that animates a painting or sculpture. where there is an overall similarity with form/scale/, when sculpture has a ‘nice’ feel and nothing else then I am worried. Similarly with equal tones/forms and a ‘gentle’ soothing surface in painting. Whether there is a splitting point I shall continue to consider, there is definitely a tipping point one way or the other!

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      • Thanks Alex, that ‘s enlightening – the degrees of force, and I agree with the thoughts about a similarity of scale which dovetails with my own, at present.

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    • I completely agree Tony, with the ‘grouping’. This was deliberate from the outset. I wanted to break down the bulk of the material and literally open up the potential to both see through and to make new physical and visual connections. the dowelling is deliberately tiny in cross section, I wanted as small as physical an impact, larger dowels would have been in the way such as making an impact on the surfaces to a far greater extent – a foil to the visual experience. I am very aware of the increased visual linear direction created by the cuts (and this is largely why Zolemba was stained). ‘Sculpture needs to continually test the credibility of its space and material’- I tested the wood to destruction more times than I care to say! However, I do believe the forms created by bending, exert an increased tension in 360* because of the way in which they were made and constructed.

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  20. smart said:

    From Tony

    The two groupings I have referred to , Zolemba and Ajija, are essentially flatfish with depth [ in my mind ]. I could’t help see that as a way of rebuilding Tim’s plywood issue, in effect being opened out in depth by yoIn suggesting your two sculptures be combined , I’m imagining a greater dialogue of meanings to overcome the’ depth ‘ and move on to a full three dimensional experience, different, but as whole as say Rraff.

    As ever, your sculpture has a way of getting into one’s imagination and exerting its presence.
    It’s a good show and I thank you for it.

    PS … so is the ‘plywood issue’ an issue because it has a functional historical origin ..and you have made your own !

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  21. harleysculpture said:

    Many thanks to everyone who posted such insightful and thought-provoking comments on my work. These will replay in my head for a long while to come and they are much appreciated. Massive thanks to John Pollard for uploading all the images, to Anne and Tony Smart for the co-ordination.

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