- Category: Schools
- Published on Thursday, 07 June 2012 22:07
- Written by Press Release
“Upside Down, Kneeling” by Sophie Ryder (PHOTO SUPPLIED)
University Park, IL-(ENEWSPF)- Rabbit-earred and human-limbed, “Upside Down, Kneeling” is a superb addition to the Nathan Manilow Sculpture Park (NMSP) at Governors State University.
The sculpture, by British artist Sophie Ryder, is the latest piece to be displayed as part of NMSP’s Solo Exhibition Series. It is on display through October 31, sponsored, in part by BMO Harris Bank. Ryder’s work is on view through a generous loan by Robert and Karen Duncan.
“This, the third in the NMSP’s Solo Exhibition Series of presentations sponsored by BMO Harris Bank, provides students at GSU with the chance to interact with new artwork generated by a major, internationally-recognized sculptor,” said Geoffrey Bates, the sculpture park’s director and curator. “‘Upside Down, Kneeling’ not only provides sculpture students from throughout the region a provocative approach to concept, but also a completely innovative technique for the creation of large-scale sculpture.”
“Upside Down, Kneeling” is constructed with galvanized wire over a steel frame. Ryder’s process of winding and binding wire to define the sculpture’s outward appearance establishes a surface treatment that, from a distance, appears quite solid, almost granite-like. Upon approach, the massive artwork dissolves into an energetic gesture drawing in which whorls of line have been massed to define the essence of availability.
The sculpture is one of a series by Ryder depicting the Lady Hare, a creature of her own invention with a hare’s head and female body. Through this character, and her relationships, Ryder examines her own emotions and the human condition. She also focuses in great detail on the human body, rendering hands, eyes, and feet on a huge scale with the precision and delicacy of a pencil drawing.
Individual animals and groups of them, fashioned in wire and in bronze, some realistic and some fantastic, have been a part of Ryder’s sculpture since her student days. Her technique of manipulating and winding metal wire to shape her creatures is physically demanding but endows her beasts with great dynamism. Ryder’s allegorical figures – dogs, hares, minotaurs, and horses – are often sculpted on a monumental scale and can be found in public and private collections throughout the world.
Bates said Ryder will be in Chicago to deliver the keynote address at the International Sculpture Center’s annual conference in October. She will visit GSU and NMSP at that time, he said.
The Nathan Manilow Sculpture Park is located at Governors State University’s main campus in University Park. The park is free of charge and open from dawn to dusk 365 days a year. For more information about the sculpture park, visit
www.govst.edu/sculpture or call (708) 534-4486.