bronze with brown patina
119 x 51 x 59 cm (46 7/8 x 10 x 23 1/4 in.)
with signature, numbered 4/6 and with foundry stamp on the base of the sculpture edition of 6 + 1 AP with different patinae
In his sculptural and plastic works, Tony Cragg is primarily interested in the visual impact, while he subordinates haptic and physical qualities to this primacy. In fact, it is even a synesthetic experience, thus the blending of sensory perceptions, which Cragg explores in his works. This apparent mysteriousness, however, is typical of Cragg's approach in all his works, as he negates any philosophical, spiritual or transcendent ambition: his sculptures have no symbolism, they are pure visual structure. The material character of the work is also enigmatic and is not immediately readable. Sculpted from bronze, Cragg manages to blend different aggregate states of his material, as the bronze pours out in a kind of frozen cascade or like a petrified lava flow of which it is not clear whether it is in a state of melting or solidification. This contradiction between the amorphously mobile impression and the massiveness and stability of the material dynamizes the view of the sculpture, and it is precisely this visual impression that Tony Cragg is concerned with. While Cragg was still fascinated by natural forms and their inexhaustible variety in his early works to such an extent that he directly incorporated them into his work unchanged in the form of found objects, he increasingly began to recreate this repertoire of shapes in his continuing work and to recombine them. "Small Faces" already belongs to a work phase in which Cragg himself recreated amorphic and biomorphic forms that are analogous to such natural shapes. He developed his sculptures from these formulations, no longer from the pure combination of existing material. The impression of flowing, of the fleetingness and constant change of the visible, the incomprehensible, which contrasts with the massiveness of the object - this is the exploration of visual perception and its interpretation by the viewer that Tony Cragg's sculptures are engaged in.