EXHIBITION Antony GORMLEY : Second Body

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Antony Gormley 'Expansion Field 14/60', 2014. 4 mm Corten steel. 199.8 x 56.9 x 50.1 cm © Antony Gormley. Courtesy Galerie Thaddaeus Ropac Paris/Salzburg. Photograph by Jürgen Brinkmann

Antony Gormley ‘Expansion Field 14/60’, 2014. 4 mm Corten steel. 199.8 x 56.9 x 50.1 cm © Antony Gormley. Courtesy Galerie Thaddaeus Ropac Paris/Salzburg. Photograph by Jürgen Brinkmann

Galerie Thaddaeus Ropac, Pantin, until 18th july 2015.

Thaddaeus Ropac gallery hosts, within its Paris Pantin site, a major exhibition by British artist Antony Gormley. Second Body features his recent sculptures: impressive artworks at the boundaries between sculpture and architecture, inhabiting the vast halls of this former foundry and disorienting the visitor.

 

Antony Gormley in front of 'Hole', 2014, 8mm corten steel. 370 x 310 x 220 cm. Photo Stephen White, London 2015.

Antony Gormley in front of ‘Hole’, 2014, 8mm corten steel. 370 x 310 x 220 cm. Photo Stephen White, London 2015.

The body and its Habitat

The first exhibition space is occupied by Hole, a four-meter-high work in corten steel. This arrangement of geometric elements invokes both the human figure and the habitat. Multiple holes perforate this ‘body envelope’ resembling cells, windows or corridors. Cavities and partly enclosed volumes contrast with each other, allowing for the penetration of the gaze, yet prohibiting any physical access.

 

Time and Space

The work Matrix II which was specifically designed for room n°4 draws a ‘virtual architecture’ in the gallery space. This monumental installation consists of wire mesh. The viewer is invited to move around sixteen room-sized volumes. No perspective is being privileged. The movement around the sculpture reveals a changing work, confusing the visitor who is unable to distinguish between the first layer, the second and the background.

 

Antony Gormley, 'Matrix II' , 2015. 370 x 310 x 220 cm. Courtesy Galerie Thaddaeus Ropac Paris/Salzburg.

Antony Gormley, ‘Matrix II’ , 2015. 370 x 310 x 220 cm. Courtesy Galerie Thaddaeus Ropac Paris/Salzburg.

 

The Fields

Since the 1990’s, Antony Gormley explores – through large-scale installations – the relationship between the body and its environment, as illustrated by the artwork Expansion Fields made of 60 large sculptures whose forms are directly derived from the human body. These steel blocks, strictly aligned in four rows, are reminiscent of an impenetrable soldiers’ army. Together the group of sculptures form a ‘Field’.

Antony Gormley Expansion Field, 2014. 60 elements; variable dimensions. 4 mm Corten steel. Photograph Charles Duprat. Courtesy Galerie Thaddaeus Ropac Paris/Salzburg.

Antony Gormley Expansion Field, 2014. 60 elements; variable dimensions. 4 mm Corten steel. Photograph Charles Duprat. Courtesy Galerie Thaddaeus Ropac Paris/Salzburg.

 

Antony Gormley, fonte/ cast iron. Galerie Taddaeus Ropac, Paris Pantin.

Antony Gormley, fonte/ cast iron. Galerie Taddaeus Ropac, Paris Pantin.

In the largest and highest space of the exhibition are installed a series of over life-size totemic figures carrying a great evocative power. Fifteen iron cast silhouettes outline a wide range of body attitudes in a choreography going from reluctance to exuberant joy.

 

Each room of Second Body plunges the visitor into multiple experiences where the body becomes a magical space constantly transforming.

 

Antony Gormley, 'Big Switch', 2014. Cast iron. 297 x 74 x 67.5 cm. © Antony Gormley. AG 1376. Courtesy Galerie Thaddaeus Ropac Paris/Salzburg. Photograph by Stephen White, London.

Antony Gormley, ‘Big Switch’, 2014. Cast iron. 297 x 74 x 67.5 cm. © Antony Gormley. AG 1376. Courtesy Galerie Thaddaeus Ropac Paris/Salzburg. Photograph by Stephen White, London.

Antony Gormley, Big Pluck, 2014, Cast iron. 294 x 78 x 45 cm. © Antony Gormley. AG 1377. Courtesy Galerie Thaddaeus Ropac Paris/Salzburg. Photograph by Stephen White, London

Antony Gormley, Big Pluck, 2014, Cast iron. 294 x 78 x 45 cm. © Antony Gormley. AG 1377. Courtesy Galerie Thaddaeus Ropac Paris/Salzburg. Photograph by Stephen White, London.

Galerie Thaddaeus Ropac, Paris Pantin 

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