Lion 1, Chadwick, L. undated
On arriving at the gallery there are two large welded stainless steel sculptures by Lynn Chadwick. Although I am not keen on his work as I find it harsh and angular, it was a surprise to see three small, delightful early maquettes exhibited inside, all around 9 cms tall . Two of them are of women walking in high winds and the third is a couple walking with cloaks billowing behind them in the wind.
Stretching Beast 1 , Chadwick, L (1990)
Inside the gallery, almost completely white, bright lights and gleaming silver, this is a 25th Anniversary
The Unknown Penitent. Hirst, D. (2016)
The sculptures are at different heights and the smaller pieces, some by Jon Buck, Abigail Fallis and Terence Coventry, are mostly grouped together on rectangular plinths and covered with Perspex. This adds to the sense of valuable items on display, and they are indeed valuable as they are cast in sterling silver.
The are two sculptures by Damien Hirst. One is from 2002 and features a hand holding a medicine bottle and tablets, entitled Sadness. The other, perhaps more interesting as it is a departure from some of his other material, is a 2016 piece entitled The Unknown Penitent.
The exhibition proves to be full of surprises with a small sculpture of a foetus by Anthony Gormley. Again a departure from his often very large male forms, this piece is delicate, tiny and disturbing as it nestles in a silver dish. Although obviously not cast from his own body, Christies write in their catalogue that it is his imagined prenatal form.
Daniel Chadwick, son of Lynn Chadwick has three pieces in the exhibition. Two of these are rather bland but the third, entitled Marry Me, is wonderfully complex and intricate.
The exhibition is extremely tactile and yet the silver cannot be touched, creating a tension between the viewer and the pieces. I wondered if visitors may have been offered gloved so that they, and I , might be allowed to run fingers over the shiny objects.
http://www.christies.com/lotfinder/sculptures-statues-figures/antony-gormley-home-and-away-5100930-details.aspx (accessed 10 July 2016)