Saturday, 30 July 2016

Apollo & Dionysus

I played around with the relationship between the two pieces because that is, of course what the whole point is with the two brothers, Apollo and Dionysus.

The stones were exhibited like this at the Dalhousie building during The Humanities Postgraduate Conference.

The inspiration behind this sculpture is Nietzsche’s ‘The Birth Of Tragedy’, a reading in my Philosophy module. The duality of Apollo and Dionysus as suggested by Nietzsche within Greek culture compelled me to produce a sculpture that embraced that nature. The Apollonian character, known for form and structure is in opposition to the Dionysian chaos and passion. Although it is the tension that holds the two in balance which most interests me. Balance is the key to being able to live in this world and Nietzsche believed that the ideal person was one who was able to maintain this stability by using qualities from the opposites that are part of human nature.

Sandstone and soapstone are the two materials chosen and I have used them because of their diverse textural and visual qualities. The beginning of a sculpture is visually chaotic as there is no apparent direction or structure to the work, there is a constant refining before a form begins to take shape, where I am using control to enable the structure to appear. I prefer to use hand tools when carving, because then, the act of sculpting involves me in a dialogue with the stone and I feel a kind of transcendence from the here and now.

On their own, the two pieces are unsteady but it is when they join and accept the other half when balance occurs.

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