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Conrad Shawcross

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Plate set

About the Artist

$324

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3 Plate set

65 | 32 | 15_8

Conrad Shawcross is one of the UK’s most exciting artists.

His sculptures explore subjects that lie on the borders of geometry and philosophy, physics and metaphysics. Inspired by different technologies, the artist's structures may retain in appearance the authority of machines – yet, they remain enigmatic, filled with paradox and wonder.

The series began with a visit to the Science Museum when he was a student, 25 years ago. Inside the long-since-closed Maths gallery, amidst glass vitrines lined with psychedelic wallpapers, one object caught the artist’s attention: a harmonograph. This was a Victorian machine that was originally made to analyse the vibrations caused by trains travelling at speed underneath buildings when they were constructing London’s Tube system, acting like an early seismograph. Shawcross was taken with this old-fashioned way to visualise and ‘swap the senses around’, evoking the experience of synaesthesia. He went about building his own version of the machine, which produced a picture of a chord falling into silence.

‘I was essentially trying to make a very beautiful, compelling object - At the end of the day I’m an artist – but there was also an attempt to cloak it in the aesthetic of the rational or of an empirical process’, Shawcross said ‘When you go into a gallery you can say: oh, it’s just art, I don’t need to understand it. Whereas if you walk into a junk shop or a charity shop and you find some strange esoteric object, you can’t dismiss it, you have to work out what it’s for’.

6:5

Conrad Shawcross

Manifold Study (Minor Third) 6:5, 2022 ceramic plate with printed image

27 x 27 x 5 cm

3:2

Conrad Shawcross
Manifold Study (Perfect Fifth) 3:2, 2022 ceramic plate with printed image
27 x 27 x 5 cm

15:8

Conrad Shawcross

Manifold Study (Major Seventh) 15:8, 2022 ceramic plate with printed image
27 x 27 x 5 cm