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wood sculpture

The material for this wood sculpture came free from a scaffolders who were discarding it. I used scaffolding boards which are used for temporary staging and floors built up on the sides of buildings as they seem appropriate to the layers of an archaeological site. There was about 3 tons of wood and, with some help from friends, we broke and splintered the edges of the boards, cut them and fixed them in stacks. This recycled sculpture was first shown at London's Serpentine gallery. The piece takes as its starting point the Sutton Hoo Burial ship which survived only as an impression in the sandy soil above the River Deben on a high escarpment in Suffolk. It had been dragged up a steep hill and buried beneath a tumulus and was about 27 metres long. It was already an old well used boat which had been given a new function to transport an Anglo Saxon king on his liminal journey beyond death. The incredible grave goods that were discovered in the ships hull were all that remains from this find and are in the British Museum. But for me even more wonderful than these objects was the negative impression of the ship itself, and that somehow it was more powerful in its absence. It has been the source of many years work and a series of artworks all of which resulted from a chance visit to the National Maritime Museum.

Materials: Recycled scaffolding boards.

Dimensions: 75 x 240 x 980 cm

Categories: indoor, recycled sculpture, room installation, gallery intervention

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