Lawrence Westlake: Within the Fire, Out Upon the Sea

11 Mar 2011 – 7 Apr 2011

Event times

Gallery open Weds - Sat, 12 - 6 pm and by appointment

Hidde van Seggelen Gallery

London, United Kingdom


Travel Information

  • Bus: 22 from Sloane Square
  • Tube: Fulham Broadway
  • Overground: Imperial Wharf

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Hidde van Seggelen Gallery is pleased to announce Lawrence Westlake's first solo exhibition at the gallery.

At first glance Westlake's sculptures seem to have emerged, momentarily, from the past. Each component within the installation has been composed and refined with deliberate control. Through his manipulation of materials, the artist proposes a fictional history not only of the physical matter, but of a more wholly encompassing physical environment.

The works were made recently, yet there are incidents of repair and restoration. Their construction frequently involves pushing the capabilities of an object, a shape, a cluster of matter. It is a process of ruination, or entropy: the materials are accelerated towards a precipice at which they will either sit comfortably, or collapse into the present.

Through these objects we are encouraged to confront our uneasy relationship with memories, mythology and the recounting of historical events. Their appearance resembles that of an archaeological find ' yet this possibility is absurd. The works negotiate these matters between themselves ' each component adds a gesture to the symbolic proposition. Each seems to have a reason for existing, legitimising itself through association with collective memories and experiences. There is no clear symbolic order within the group, though the conceptual weight of geometric structure is reinforced through a visual relationship to modernist works of art.

Despite such lofty associations, the sculptures remain weighty and materialistic. The interaction within the assembly perpetuates our awareness of tension and dialogue. Westlake has said we are 'assaulted by symbols emerging through holes in time continuously, some malevolent, some benign, but all blind.' In the midst of this, personal history mingles with the story of the whole world. Both are reflected, misrepresented, dismissed, and recalled in the wrong order, in pursuit of something we have only glimpsed from the shore.


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