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public sculpture commission by kathy dalwood                     back to commission details
for St David's 2 Cardiff
four friezes

Artist's statement

The design for the Four Friezes commissioned by St David’s 2 evolved in the context of recent sculptural practice and my twin interests in architectural ornament and the process of casting. Increasingly my work has also explored figurative sculpture, particularly looking at the interpretation of objects and materials in stone, bronze and other dense media - an interpretation realistic in terms of form but otherwise defying the properties of the original; organic materials, for example, in reality full of life and movement, are rendered solid and impassive.

The 4 plaster friezes play with a big palette of imagery – referencing the Cardiff City Hall reliefs – but in contrast to historical relief sculpture all motifs are indented, creating a reversal of the original, exploiting the convolutions of the casting process and particularly the interplay between positive and negative. The motifs within the friezes are directly cast from real-life objects - a further contrast to traditional sculpture techniques.

The issue of scale is also important here as in other work; in these friezes objects are both relatively enlarged and reduced at the same time, further emphasising a fascination with the opposition of reality and artifice.

frieze A                 books, galleons, pineapples


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frieze B                dish, boats, bananas

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frieze  C              gloves, rope, scissors


frieze D                ships, tambourines, tassels


      motif details - all casts are taken from real objects then enlarged using new mould-making technology which allows original casts to be expanded by 60% in every dimension
         details showing indentation of motifs
         The sculpture installed
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