AboutSpadeworks is the first exhibition by Norfolk-born sculptor Bob Catchpole at the King's Lynn Arts Centre. His strange, humorous and surreal world of objects and creatures draws on the agricultural heritage of Norfolk. Whilst celebrating the rich variety and sophistication of the tools needed to work the land, the sculptures also undermine our preconceptions about the nature of their function and ultimately the world we inhabit.
He uses real tools and locally-sourced oak to conjure up eccentric forms that can be both zoomorphic and anthropomorphic, whilst retaining the identities of the original objects. Using several different themes, the work has a playful, quizzical quality alongside darker intimations. New works that illustrate undercurrents of the sinister are the Daisychain series, alluding to the innocent childish pastime of interlocking flowers, yet substituting threatening blades and prongs.
The Red Barn installation recreates the mundane world of the toolshed as a magical environment inhabited by otherworldly forms where tools have taken on a life of their own. The witty and dynamic works show the artist's preoccupation with carving and construction in sculpture, in relation to the shapes and manufacturing processes from rural industries.