I love sculpture. Sculptures have presence. They become focal points in a room and make a statement as few other artforms can. Tactile, decorative, striking: as collector’s items, they have it all. Yet, perhaps because our typical consumption of sculpture tends to be in an institutional setting, complete with roping off and a ‘Do Not Touch’ sign, many art collections I have encountered during my career are thin in this particular area.
Which is why in our August auction, I wanted to push for something of a focus on this often overlooked artistic genre. From table-top proportions to the monumental; from big names to newer talent; and mediums from marble to resin, hopefully there is something here to appeal to everyone. Here, I take a look at a few personal highlights featuring in our 11 August auction...
The revered Scottish poet / land artist worked frequently in high quality stone. A quintessential, museum-quality (and scarce to market) work by the artist; here we see his signature crisp lettering adorning a monumental slab. It’s rough edges and classical script give the impression of an ancient Roman artifact, recovered from the site of a ruined civilisation.
Though he worked across many disciplines and media, Paolozzi is probably best known for his sculptural works. From his high-profile commissions like ‘Newton After Blake’, positioned strikingly outside the National Library in London, to his playful studio maquettes, like this one. The mechanised head is a classic Paolozzi motif, as is the collaged / assembled approach to his medium. This is a substantial example and, unusually, is signed.
Critically regarded, with an impressive exhibition history to his name, Maclean’s work has been gaining greater recognition recently, with prices at auction rising to reflect this. He is known for his ‘boxed assemblages’, which have a quiet, evocative poetry to them. They read as set pieces that allude to stories of the sea and life on the fringes of the Scottish coast.
See also examples from the sublime to the (intentionally) ridiculous: from beautiful works in marble by talented local sculptor Simon Burns-Cox, to a classic embodiment of the irreverent COBRA group style in the form of Corneille’s polyresin cat, ‘Erwan’. Finally, fancy a work by a Turner-prize winning artist adorning your home? It’s not as unobtainable as you’d think; we have a playful, table-top sized piece by Martin Boyce that could be yours!
Viewing by appointment in Edinburgh 6th-10th August (closed Sat 7th).
Characterised by competitive bidding, strong results and a high selling rate, our Contemporary & Post-War Art sales are among our most popular auctions. Held three times a year in our Scottish saleroom, highlights are also regularly exhibited in our London gallery. Our strong private client base and excellent international marketing reach has seen these sales grow into flagships of our company.