Simon Gudgeon Transitions Press Release

1 Mar 2013

London, UK, 27 February 2013: British sculptor Simon Gudgeon opens his new exhibition of kinetic and abstract sculptures called 'Transitions' - a reminder of the ever changing world in which we live, nothing is permanent and nothing lasts forever.

The concept of kinetic art has been in existence since the time of the ancient Egyptians who made particular use of the lever, the inclined plane, and potentially the log roller to aid in construction of the Great Pyramids. A radical wave of art in the late 1950s, riding on the back of action-infused Abstract Expressionism, gave way to the reintroduction of kinetics as an art form. Visionaries such as Alexander Calder and George Rickey were largely responsible for the popularity of the movement, which lasted through to the late 1970s and resulted in iconic works such as Calder’s monumental mobiles and Rickey’s rotating squares.

Characteristic of recirculating trends, the 21st century has seen a revival in the interest of kinetic art. The beauty of kinetic sculpture, in particular, continues to captivate the viewer as during times of change, the random and surprising movements seem to echo the persistent acts of disintegration and recovery.

Transitions, in many ways, demonstrates a natural progression from Gudgeon’s traditional focus.  Although elements of the natural world are still highly pronounced, their forms have now been acutely abstracted and many set in motion. Gudgeon is no stranger to artistic contemplation, many of his previous works having been inspired during trips abroad or constant and detailed study of his subjects; but for this inaugural exhibition, his kinetic sculptures allow him to move beyond his past oeuvre, whilst maintaining the intrinsic beauty and grace for which his art is respected and known.

Simon Gudgeon on Kinetic Art: “All of my sculptures have a common theme: they are explorations in abstraction and form, expressions of beauty that appeal to the senses. The work must have a vitality and emotional appeal beyond its façade, an appeal that must remain independent of the object it represents and transcend beyond the layer of pure aesthetics.

The sculpture, or the object in its most simple form, is a medium for conveying said vitality and emotion. My fascination with kinetic sculpture began when I first saw the work of Alexander Calder and George Rickey, and in many ways, I feel my kinetic works are a tribute to those great masters of the art. I found the gentle movement of the sculptures mesmerizing and was fascinated by the infinite potential of kinetic art.

Most sculptures are rigid forms; they have a sense of permanence and solidarity. I wanted to move away from this expectation, to transition my sculptures as a literal reminder of the world in which we live – an ever changing, constantly fluctuating space. I believe these changes, these unexpected events, mould our lives and create our future.

Unlike most of my previous works, each piece belonging to an edition, the sculptures in the kinetic range are individually fabricated, with each bronze patination mixed separately. Because of this process, each piece is unique, hand-made and assembled in my studio. The singularity of the kinetic production highlights the complexity and exclusivity of each and every moment experienced in life, alluding to the notion that – nothing is permanent, nothing lasts forever.” Simon Gudgeon

Gudgeon’s kinetic sculptures will also be exhibited at the KINETICA Art Fair on the 28 February to the 3 March 2013.