A Polish artist has given Antony Gormley’s famous beach sculptures a bit of a knitted makeover.
Antony Gormley’s permanent sculptures may have been permanently situated on Crosby Beach in England since 2005, but the figures have certainly undergone quite the transformation thanks to the efforts of Polish-born artist Agata Oleksiak.
The sculptures, who were previously life-sized figures covered in rust and barnacles, now find themselves donning a multi-coloured crocheted outfit designed by Oleksiak.
In regards to his sculptures new clothes, Gormley said
: "I feel that barnacles provide the best cover-up, but this is a very impressive substitute!"
One of the sculptures was given a pink, purple and green jumpsuit to wear, whilst the more neutral colours of white, grey and black were adopted for another of Gormley's pieces.
The 34-year-old artist has not been shy about her croqueted knitting skills. Her colourful croquet pattern was once seen on the Wall Street bull in New York, and she has been known for covering several items from cars to grand pianos in the same way.
"I think it is his most successful installation. The pieces have been there for a while and people stop paying attention to them,” she said
about the sculptures.
"By covering them and giving them a new skin, I made them more alive... besides, it is a public work and needs an interaction with a viewer."
Although she wanted to cover more of the sculptures, the artist admits she only had time to cover two during her “crocheted taxi” ride from London across the UK. Indeed, covering all 100 of Gormley’s figures would have been no easy task, but the artist maintains that her outfits are helping to transform “old into new.”
The artist has had her work exhibited across the world, including Germany, Brazil, Turkey, France, Poland, Italy and Costa Rica, and has been involved in several different projects where she continues to showcase her knitting talent.
“I think crochet, the way I create it, is a metaphor for the complexity and interconnectedness of our body and its systems and psychology. The connections are stronger as one fabric as opposed to separate strands, but, if you cut one, the whole thing will fall apart,” she said
“Relationships are complex and greatly vary situation to situation. They are developmental journeys of growth, and transformation. Time passes, great distances are surpassed and the fabric which individuals are composed of compiles and unravels simultaneously.”
Now in the US, Oleksiak is working her crocheted magic at an exhibition in Raleigh, North Carolina, which will be followed by shows in Montreal and at the Smithsonian American Art Museum in Washington.