Rodin employed much tenderness when he sculpted The Kiss* (see pic below). Wrought in marble, he also employed much muscle, as well as all his skills, to create perhaps 'the' emblem of the lovers' embrace.
But look again, here's a close-up.
What has happened? The male has been given a nipple-ring; Out of shot, someone has removed one of his fingers and stuck it on the wall. Look at the female. Her body has been gouged and wormy bits added. Round the back, someone has given her dreadlocks. And look, someone is actually touching the sculpture.
Ha, it's intentional, so I'll stop teasing dear reader now.
- It's not marble, it's a slightly larger than the original copy cast from oil-based modelling clay (Plasticine to give it its trade name).
- It is the work of a present-day artist, the very much alive Urs Fischer.
- The artistic idea is to confront immutability; to make a copy that is so malleable that it can become a collaborative work, a collaboration between the artist and the viewer - you and me if you like.**
Here's my final pic, the fun bit . . .
I hope the picture speaks for itself. Please note that I visited the exhibition on February 14 - subsequent visitors will have made further changes since then.
1 Davies Street
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Tues – Sat 11 – 6
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* Rodin also practised a form of co-laboration in that he employed studio assistants who, working from small models, would rough out the basic shapes of a sculpture for the master to complete. Rodin made three signed copies of this work, also in marble. You can see one of them in Tate Britain.
** Urs Fischer's The Kiss (2017) will be exhibited at Sadie Coles HQ over the course of a single month.