INSTALLATION OF DAZE VI, TAMAR PARK, HONG KONG
22 February - 11 April 2018
It could be argued that the most resistant of the Platonic solids is the cube. DAZE VI is made of a vertical stack of cubes, some of the smallest of which fall at the ankle resulting in a sense of precarious instability in the form. DAZE VI could be seen as a play on or a riposte to the heroic in the western tradition of statue making. Expressing uncertainty, nervousness and apprehension, the body posture of this work evokes a fear of what lies beyond the horizon, with fists held hard under head and the entire body twisting in a 90 degree turn between head and foot.
The work is a good example of Gormley's interest in using sculpture not to represent or reinforce the status quo but to call into question the contexts that surround it. The sculpture encourages a form of reflexivity and, in its alert and aware pose, invites the viewer to become aware of his/her own position in space.
In the context of Hong Kong's high-rise towers, population density and the pressure on built space, and the concomitant sense of anxiety, DAZE VI is considered by the artist to capture the dynamic of the situation.
The life-sized work stands directly on the ground. It is made from grey iron and cast at the same temperatures as the iron at the core of this planet. The artist wishes the action of time and the elements on the matter to be part of the sculpture's nature. Its structure mirrors the cubic crystalline form of iron pyrite and implies a dialogue between human nature and planetary matter.