Sunday, June 17, 2012

Barrington Court - Antony Gormley Inspired!

The inspiration for these earrings came from a trip to Barrington Court to see Antony Gormley's installation called "Field for the British Isles". The installation consists of 40,000 clay figures that had been meticulously laid out in three rooms completely filling the room so that no floor could be seen.  It was very impressive and it looked like there were thousends of little tiny people looking at you.  They were laid out so that the eyes of each figure faced the front and the figures closer to the front looked up towards the ceiling.  Very effective!  They were all very individual, different shapes, sizes and colours.  I wish I could of taken some photos but we were not allowed.  If you click on the link above you can view some of the official pictures.

The clay figures were quite small and had been made by a group of families in St Helens near Liverpool back in 1993.  Antony Gormley used the figures to completely fill the floor of one of the exhibition rooms at the Tate Liverpool in 1993 and as a result won the Turner Prize in 1994.  He is also very famous for the 'Angel of the North'.

According to the National Trust article Antony Gormley said: “ .....The instructions to create the work are very simple. You sit on the floor. You take a ball of clay from a pile. With your clay, you create a “body” in the space between your hands. You allow it to stand up, and make it conscious by giving it eyes with the point of a sharpened pencil. That repeated action of taking a hand-sized ball of clay, squeezing it between your hands, standing it up and giving it consciousness becomes meditative, the repeated action becoming almost like breathing, or a heartbeat.”

Well, knowing I had a pair of earrings to make for the 52 earrings a week challenge, I had to have a go!  But I wasn't alone making the earrings this time ..... my family had a go too.  It was great fun and my children loved it!  So I mixed three batches of clay in three slightly different colours and we each had a go at making our own clay figure.

We had such a lovely day visiting Barrington Court (and I am very sentimental) I decided to turn our figures into a necklace to keep as a memory of our day.

Sarah xx

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