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New exhibition by British artist Tom Price opens at Yorkshire Sculpture Park
Tom Price, Ducie Street, Figure 4, 2008. Courtesy the artist and Hales Gallery, London.

WAKEFIELD.- Yorkshire Sculpture Park presents a solo exhibition of sculpture, animation and work on paper by British artist Tom Price (b. 1981) from 4 January – 27 April 2014, including the open-air premiere of Network, the young artist’s largest bronze to date.

Inspired by public observation, magazine images and historic sculpture, Price is rapidly establishing a strong reputation for his mastery of traditional techniques, his representation of contemporary subject matter and his consideration of identity. In using bronze to depict composite portraits of ‘the man in the street’, particularly of African descent, Price knowingly challenges the versatile and durable material’s historic associations with authority and privilege.

In the form of a young man in casual dress holding and looking at a phone, the 2012 sculpture Network references our social relationships in a world where we are increasingly connected through remote means. Sited in the open air in YSP’s Lower Park, the 2.74m figure overlooks the Park’s historic lakes and sculptures by Anthony Caro, Antony Gormley and Sol LeWitt.

YSP’s Bothy Gallery documents Price’s development of the male figure and fascination with the minutiae of body language and facial expression, from the 2008 nudes Orpheus Street and Ducie Street, whose titles are taken from locations near Price’s London studio; through small heads, such as Untitled (Cornrows) made in 2010; to sculptures on plinths made in 2011 – small-scale and unassuming black male figures with relaxed postures and dressed in casualwear.

Mesmerising images of large clay heads blink silently from the gallery wall in the artist’s stop-motion animations Man 8, 2005 and Man 9, 2005. Price’s chosen film medium gives an almost tangible quality to the clay, enhancing the sense of character and creating intrigue around the objects in the videos, more so than if they were encountered in the real world.

Price’s photographic works Marble Draft (Untitled 8) and Marble Draft (Untitled 10), part of a series 2010-13, also feature in the Bothy Gallery. Started during Price’s time at the British School at Rome in Italy, Marble Draft features images of the artist’s hands manipulating pages and images of old books about classical art, exploring the stories behind various sculptures and their origin.

An in-conversation event between the artist and Melissa Hamnett, Sculpture Curator at the Victoria and Albert Museum, accompanies the exhibition in spring 2014.

Tom Price, born in London, UK in 1981, studied at Chelsea College of Art (2001-2004) and received an MA at the Royal College of Art, Sculpture School (2004-2006). In 2009 he was featured alongside Grayson Perry, Michael Landy, Sir Anthony Caro and Cornelia Parker on the BBC 4 television documentary, Where is Modern Art Now?, presented by Gus Casely-Hayford. Also in 2009 he was awarded the Arts Council England Helen Chadwick Fellowship, which included 4 months at the British School in Rome where he began to develop the Marble Draft series. In 2010 he featured on BBC 4’s, How to Get A Head in Sculpture, also featuring Marc Quinn and Sir Anthony Caro. In 2010 Price was included in 10 Magazine’s Ten Sculptors You Should Meet and was an invited artist at the Royal Academy Summer Show.

Selected shows include shows at the Royal Academy of Arts (London), Mac Birmingham (UK), Royal College of Art (London), Andipa Gallery (London) and Hales Gallery (London). His work has also been included in shows in the US and Europe.

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January 5, 2014

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