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Specialists in the Sale of 20th Century, Modern and Contemporary Sculpture

Sculpting with Found Objects

Found objects have been a well-used medium for making sculpture, recycling and upcycling making the style a lot more accessible. The use of found objects in art goes back to Duchamp in 1915 with his innovative and controversial move to placing an object in the gallery space, while sculpture took a turn to making subjective works from a mass of found objects. The process has grown to such a height that great numbers of artists now work in found objects, popular amongst art students as it costs nothing or very little, the process is centred around salvaging objects that are interesting to the artist and sculpting them together with the suitable techniques and materials to form a subjective piece.

Often the found objects artists lean towards figurative works or nature based works seeing trees made from scrap metal or (as above) ‘Four Horses of the Apocalypse’ by Anthony Heywood which is an array of found objects from toys to televisions, the works are often considered abstract due to some of the works produced having to be flexible about realism when construction methods make it difficult to achieve realistic aspects.

Scale is not considered a problem when working with found materials as the work can grow with time, the more objects the artist finds they may choose to add to a piece. Heywood sometimes refreshes his works, which has been known to happen amongst found object artists, as the work becomes weathered, aged or even loose the art may choose to remove pieces and replace them with something different. The beauty of found object artworks is that the artist may choose to remove and replace but the work will always remain the same, providing the artist is keeping to the original scheme. Much the same as a painter when they restore works they would be sympathetic to the originality.

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