Shaping the World : Sculpture from Prehistory to Now available to buy at Museum Bookstore

Shaping the World : Sculpture from Prehistory to Now

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'Here, the artist and the art historian offer a fascinating conversation, which defines sculpture as widely as possible (a prehistoric hand axe and Silbury Hill, for example) and illustrates a varied and inspiring analysis with a generous, seductive selection of plates. They consider fluid forms such as ritual and dance, and the whole journey from past to present leads you to look at the familiar anew. Brilliant.' - Daily Mail

A compelling history of sculpture

In this wide-ranging, thought-provoking and sometimes provocative new book, leading sculptor Antony Gormley, informed and energised by a lifetime of making, and art critic and historian Martin Gayford, explore sculpture as a transnational art form with its own compelling history. The authors' lively conversations and explorations make unexpected connections across time and media. Sculpture has been practised by every culture throughout the world and stretches back into our distant past.

The first surviving shaped stones may even predate the advent of language. Evidently, the desire to carve, mould, bend, chip away, weld, suspend, balance - to transform a vast array of materials and light into new shapes and forms - runs deep in our psyche and is a fundamental part of our human journey and need for expression.

With more than 300 spectacular illustrations, Shaping the World juxtaposes a rich variety of works - from the famous Lowenmensch or Lion Man, c.35,000 BCE to Michelangelo's luminous Pieta in Rome, the Terracotta Warriors in China to Rodin's The Kiss, Marcel Duchamp's ready-mades, Olafur Eliasson's extraordinary Weather Project and Kara Walker's Fons Americanus, and Tomas Saraceno's ongoing Aerocene project, as well as examples of Gormley's own work. Antony Gormley and Martin Gayford take into account materials and techniques, and consider overarching themes such as light, mortality and our changing world. Above all, they discuss their view of sculpture as a form of physical thinking capable of altering the way people feel, and they invite us to look at sculpture we encounter - and more broadly the world around us - in a completely different way.

Details
  • Authors: Antony Gormley and Martin Gayford
  • Hardcover: 392 pages | 304 colour illustrations
  • Date published: October 2020
  • Language: English
  • ISBN: 978-0500022672
  • Product Dimensions: 28.8 x 22.7 cm
Reviews

'a magnificent, comprehensive survey of the medium, ranging from the Lion Man in 35,000 B.C. to the Chinese Terracotta Army to the work of Kara Walker' -  New York Times

'Here, the artist and the art historian offer a fascinating conversation, which defines sculpture as widely as possible (a prehistoric hand axe and Silbury Hill, for example) and illustrates a varied and inspiring analysis with a generous, seductive selection of plates. They consider fluid forms such as ritual and dance, and the whole journey from past to present leads you to look at the familiar anew. Brilliant.' - Daily Mail

'If you want to rethink your ideas about sculpture, this fascinating book will give you pause for thought on just about every page ... a mighty, lusciously produced tome ... You can lose yourself in just looking at the illustrations' - Financial Times

'[A] revealing examination of sculpture across the aeons' -Best Art Books of 2020, Sunday Times

'A fully illustrated journey across time and space ... a volume about relishing not just the range and variety, but also the power and possibilities of the discipline it discusses' - The Times

'The quality of production does full justice to the superb content ...there's a strong sense of a continuous narrative driven by shared enthusiasm and common, though not always parallel, ground' - artbookreview.com

'Gormley provides an exceptionally erudite foil for their joint insights into the merging of art, architecture, faith and life' - World of Interiors