Tony Cragg: In Collaboration with Houghton Hall
FREE to view from 14 June 2021
Supported by the Houghton Arts Foundation
In collaboration with Houghton Hall, we are delighted to present Hollow Head, by internationally acclaimed British sculptor Tony Cragg. This important sculpture is integrated into the collection display, the Living Area, surrounded by works by Francis Bacon, Chaïm Soutine and Henry Moore as well as masterworks of sculpture from Africa and Oceania.
Tony Cragg was born in Liverpool, UK in 1949 and since 1977 he has lived and worked in Wuppertal, Germany. In 1988 he received the Turner Prize and also represented Britain at the forty second Venice Biennale. Cragg’s early work from the mid-1970s through to the early 1980s involved the salvaging of discarded often fragmented, plastic objects and using them to create new wall-based compositions. In the early 1980s, Cragg moved away from installation art and began, through a more studio-orientated practice, to examine sculpture in terms of its materiality and experiment with a wide range of materials.
Since the 1990s, Cragg has developed two larger groups of work up to the present: the Early Forms and the Rational Beings. The Early Forms series investigate vessels and containers. The Rational Beings are columnar organic forms that hover between abstraction and figuration. Seen in the round, human profiles fade in and out of abstraction.
The underlying geometry and structure of these sculptures reflects the basic structures of living things such as organisms, organs, plants and animals. Hollow Head is a wonderful example of one of his abstracted heads and more figurative-based sculptures. Tony Cragg is represented in collections across the globe as well as at the sculpture park he helped to establish in Wuppertal, Germany.
Image: Tony Cragg, Hollow Head, 2019
Quote: Tony Cragg
“I like to create the internal structure of things – the human figure is an organic form, but has many geometries: our organs, bone structure, cells and molecules. Then I like to vary this structure till it has an emotional effect on me”