I have made a sculpture maquette called Lockdown.
The figure cast in bronze resin stands with hands pressed against the glass, looking out, trapped and alone inside a box. I want it to portray that ‘euuuuhh aaaaagh’ feeling!—the caged, silent scream of angst and claustrophobia that we might all feel when deprived of going out when we want.
The sculpture is a self-portrait. I am fortunate that I have not had to endure the lockdown alone, being able to share it with my family—but I am imprisoned committing no crime. Lockdown is claustrophobic. I am desperate to get out, to speak and mingle with others again!
Mingle. Now there’s a word! Will it ever be possible to get out of this box and have a carefree mingle ever again? To visit a crowded bar? Gosh, I miss pubs! Go to the theatre? Sit in a packed auditorium? Go to the Emirates Stadium and watch Arsenal lose again? Go to a party! Out to dinner even!
Cast in bronze resin
I have cast this sculpture in bronze resin. It’s something I have been able to make at home, eliminating the need to mingle at a foundry. It’s a good thing to do with provisional sculptural ideas to see if it’s something worth developing. I like the way this first maquette has turned out. It expresses my feelings about this awful time of personal confinement and restrictions we are all going through.
For the patina, I have rubbed black metal wax into the bronze with a touch of verdigris. I love verdigris! The green speaks to me of great sculptures affected by outdoor elements. There’s a super Elizabeth Frink bronze sculpture with loads of verdigris in Paternoster Square that I admire every time I walk past it, and I’ve aimed to simulate that oxidised look in this maquette.
Concrete and Perspex
The figure stands on a concrete floor. I love concrete! I reckon concrete can make great plinths and I shall experiment some more using this age old modern material.
The Perspex box used to be a container for coffee capsules and nearly got thrown away. I’m pretty pleased with the way I have recycled it. I wonder if Nespresso might like to sponsor me to make more Lockdown sculptures in their boxes? Or does anyone know a good supplier of such Perspex or glass boxes, please? I plan to produce a limited edition of this Lockdown figure and shall need more boxes. If you are a Perspex or glass case/box supplier, please get in touch. And if you are an Arts patron who would care to sponsor a larger or life size sculpture—please get in touch quickly!
The maquette figure stands within a 13 x 13 x 13 cm box.
Is this the doorway to freedom?
While I sat waiting outside this door for my jab in Barts Hospital, London, I knew Hope lay beyond it. Was this the beginning of the end of lockdowns? A way of getting outside of the Perspex/glass box! toward some sort of new freedom?
I think the phrase the PM uttered in his own definitive way, during yesterday’s briefing from Downing Street “The hope of crocus is poking through the frost” sums up the feeling of success and optimism of the vaccine rollout, quite well!
My photo to illustrate the PM’s words “crocus poking through the frost” is a shot of the Autumn crocus I took during the recent cold spell at the Barbers’ Physic Garden. The colchicum autumale is not a true crocus, but it’s the nearest pic I’ve got in my photo library that shows some sort of brave crocus poking through the frost!
The efficient treatment and care by the NHS during the vaccine rollout is impressive. It is a remarkable achievement and one to be duly proud of. My thanks to all of the NHS and vaccine producing heroes that have made the vaccine rollout possible💉 🌈
Bye for now,
Take care and keep safe