ANGUS TAYLOR: In The Middle Of It
Nov 8 – Nov 30, 2017
Everard Read CIRCA is pleased to present In the middle of it. This the second solo exhibition by Angus Taylor with the Everard Read Gallery in Cape Town, and his first presentation at the CIRCA Cape Town space. The exhibition runs from the 8th until the 30th of November 2017.
A walkabout with the artist will be held on Saturday 18th November at 11:30am in CIRCA.
Angus Taylor’s sculptures transmit an acute awareness of vulnerability and temporality. In the middle of it marks a fissured moment on the timeline of the human condition – a passing through the storms of hardship. Each figure is part of a continuum revealing the human condition as struggle, breakthrough and a manifestation of resilience. Difficulties shape and nurture us and our consciousness. The stone barrier becomes a passage to attaining strength; a veil to press through.
The brief span of human presence, juxtaposed with the timelessness of stone, poignantly contrasts transience and permanence. Stone forms an integral part of the human story; a deeply embedded slow release of meaning; a conveyer of a sense of deep time and deep consciousness. Taylor draws on the tension arising from these binaries to give meaning to the present, to this moment, by using materials such as Belfast gabbro – an igneous stone from Mpumalanga in South Africa – which is over two billion years old. He believes his medium – the mediator between his ideas and artworks – holds no truth or agenda except to express experience and tell a story that might assist the viewer in formulating his or her own story.
Since the beginning of his career as a sculptor, two decades ago, Angus Taylor has maintained his position at the centre of his artistic process: from modelling, through to casting and finishing materials, and the final installation of the artwork. Taylor believes that if the artist is the constant in the continuum, there is a greater awareness of poetic intervention. ‘In this way, less of my intention can be lost in translation between concept and process, and between process and materials.’ In the middle of it is proof of an artist being in the moment, beyond the initial anxiety of the halfway mark, and thoroughly immersed in his work: ‘I am fortunate to have the luxury of now seeking out my own difficulties, and it is a good place to be. I hope the work communicates this energy.’
Angus Taylor celebrates being in the middle of it with latest body of work - Johan Myburg
Taylor made this body of work for his first solo exhibition in the United Kingdom, exhibited earlier this year in the Everard Read Gallery in London. The monumental scale and imposing presence of the work made a favourable impression on the London public and they expressed a real interest in Taylor’s use of materials (red jasper, hematite, bronze and stainless steel) as well as in the highly textured quality of the work. Known for his powerful sculptures, Taylor works with an extraordinary range of materials from his immediate environment. “I always go back to stone; I cannot create anything better than stone,” he admits. Referring to the exhibition title he says: “I guess I am in the middle of it all … life expectancy, learning, work, first and third world, left and right brain, difficulty, zooming out and pulling back in.” But more than a personal reflection, this “being in the middle of it all” refers to Taylor’s place in the art world, in real terms as well as in a metaphorical sense. As a sculptor working with challenging materials, on a scale that many sculptors find intimidating, Taylor finds himself in the middle of difficulty, surrounded by the challenges of being a sculptor at the time and place he is living in.
Resistance as Nurture, a series of eight seminal sculptures, seems to comment on this awareness of wading through challenges. The conventional bronze figure pushes through a cloud of stone, accumulating ballast but at the same time buoyancy. In the Middle of It is proof of an artist being in the moment, beyond the initial anxiety of the halfway mark, and thoroughly immersed in his work: “I am fortunate to have the luxury of now seeking out my own difficulties, and it is a good place to be. I hope the work communicates this energy.”