A series of new works on paper by Antony Gormley has gone on show for the first time and forms part of a solo exhibition at The Atkinson in Southport, called Elemental.

The new series was produced by Gormley in 2014 and continues some of the themes explored in earlier works, specifically their relationship to the elemental.

Titled North Light, the carbon and casein on paper works were created during time the artist spent in Norfolk.

Gormley said: “Drawing is a means of moving away from the slow and deliberate process of sculpture into a freer, more fluid medium that allows a kind of absorption in an immediate process.

“Drawing records a place apart, between consciousness and matter, a physical space of regeneration close to sleep, where the body becomes part of the elemental world and can float, fly, be grounded, grow roots, be buried alive without resistance.

The new drawings will be exhibited alongside a series Gormley produced some 20 years earlier. The Body & Light series originates from the period 1990-96 and explores light, depth and movement. This series has been exhibited in Europe, Mexico and the USA.

Completed on small sheets of soaked, handmade paper, the drawings are swiftly executed using a Chinese calligraphy brush and black pigment and casein. The pigment disperses at different speeds and densities, enhancing the feelings of immersion. The works, often made at night, convey the sensation of floating in space or diving through deep water. Light plays a major role, acting as a foil to the weight of the ground or body, or as in the latest drawings North Light, evoking the luminous beginnings of astral matter. The works seem to emerge, rather than be willed, into form.

Said Gormley: “The exhibition celebrates the nature of drawing and its almost limitless possibilities. It communicates the thrill of imaginative exploration and of going to places, whether outer space or inner darkness, not possible in life”.

The opening of this exhibition marks the tenth anniversary of Gormley’s Another Place installation on Crosby beach. The installation comprises 100 cast iron sculptures of the artist’s own body facing towards the sea.

For more information please visit theatkinson.co.uk or by calling the Box Office on 01704 533333. They are also available over the counter during The Atkinson opening hours.


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