Posted on Format Gallery



During a 3-month residency at the British School at Rome in the heat-wave of summer 2003, Dunhill and O’Brien attempted to develop a method of modelling sculptures together using minimal physical effort in the heavy heat of their studio.

The simple devices they constructed were used to repeatedly drop rocks found in the vicinity on to mounds of soft clay. The hollows or depressions made in the clay were later filled with plaster and then inverted and fitted on to tailor-made bases reminiscent of classical stands used for portrait busts. The bases served to elevate these lowly forms, swapping the gravitational impact (of the rocks on the clay) for a more aspirational gesture.

This basic process was repeated with some variations in different locations, for example Sculpture 5 used 2 basalt cobble stones, 150 kilos of clay, 2 mosquito nets and was carried out in a small park on Via Gramsci, while Sculpture 3 used 1 irregular piece of travertine stone, 200 kilos of clay and was carried out in Studio 5, of the British School at Rome.

The process was filmed and photographed and presented alongside the objects to form a manual of their working process.