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     FrontPage Edition: Tue 11 Oct 2005

Antony Gormley's terracotta army to invade Earl Lu Gallery


Antony Gormley¡¯s 40,000-strong terracotta army to invade Earl Lu Gallery

Admirers of award-winning British installation artist Antony Gormley will soon have the privilege of viewing his renowned Asian Field at Earl Lu Gallery.
Organised by LASALLE-SIA¡¯s Institute of Contemporary Arts Singapore, this will be the sixth stop for the exhibition that has travelled to Guangzhou, Beijing, Shanghai and Chongqing in China, Japan and Incheon in Korea.
Acknowledged as a key work in contemporary sculpture, Asian Field is the most ambitious of Gormley¡¯s sculptural installations; being over four times larger than any of its predecessors. 190,000 reddish terracotta clay figures were made, under the guidance of the artist, by 440 men, women and children of all ages from Xiangshan village, northeast of Guangzhou over an intensive five-day period.
In the exhibition at Earl Lu Gallery, 40,000 of the figures will be exhibited.
Recipient of the 1994 Turner Prize and the subject of large scale surveys at the Tate Gallery, Liverpool, the Malmo Konsthall, Sweden, and the Irish Museum of Modern Art, Antony Gormley has revitalised the human figure in sculpture.
He is probably best known for having pioneered the technique of using his own body as a living mould for life-sized figures in bronze and other metals. Generating controversy and passion, Gormley¡¯s public sculptures raise key issues about the relations between art, society and the environment as a metaphysical and political realm.
Field is about the joy in material contact; about touch and touch expressed for its own sake. Touch not just by Gormley¡¯s hands but by many people¡¯s hands.
All his Field series ¨C British Field, European Field, American Field, Field for the British Isles and Asian Field ¨C have been made up of clay figures sculpted by the local people from the villages or cities where the exhibitions were held. This is done to create a strong presence of the original inhabitants of each continent, and to carry the voice of the other to reaffirm the spirit of the land that lives through the people.
To Gormley, Field is a kind of liberation in many ways, a kind of harvesting, and tilling the earth with the hands. But instead of making something grow, it is the earth that people are forming directly ¨C the harvest comes from within the people.
Asian Field will be officially opened by National Arts Council Chairman, Mr Edmund Cheng, on Thursday 27 October 2005 at 7pm, Earl Lu Gallery. The exhibition continues until 11 December 2005.
Antony Gormley will be in Singapore to oversee the installation of Field as well as give a public lecture entitled: The Viewer and the Viewed on October 29 at LASALLE-SIA.

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