London, United Kingdom
Monday, June 24, 2013
In collaboration with St. James’s Church, Piccadilly
With each of Thomas Houseago’s enigmatic works, the artist breathes new life into sculpture by injecting it with elements of craft and folk art, the natural and supernatural world, and the masters of modern art. Hauser & Wirth is delighted to present Houseago’s ‘Rattlesnake Figure (aluminum)’ in Southwood Garden as part of Hauser & Wirth Outdoor Sculpture. The sculpture will be on view through the summer.
‘Rattlesnake Figure (aluminum)’ was inspired by the venomous snakes that the artist found outside his home in the Tujunga area of Los Angeles CA. Neither male nor female, the figure strikes a seductive, alluring pose. One arm is draped over its head as if reclining, yet its posture is proud and upright. A large eye etched into the figure’s face looks out at the viewer blankly, whilst the rest of the body is turned away, viewable only in profile. Despite its silver aluminum finish, the sculpture retains the coarsely hewn form of the original work from which it was cast, carved with a chainsaw from a massive block of redwood.
Whilst the sculpture’s totemic form and rough edges recall folk art, the work’s fractured multitude of viewpoints and angular distortions speaks to Houseago’s fascination with early Cubism and the art of Picasso.