The Architect is an intriguing sculpture by English artist Jilly Sutton that blends the head of a person with geometric shapes. The peaceful, slumbering face is accompanied by a frenzy of three-dimensional blocks, adding an abstract element to the otherwise figurative sculpture. The eye-catching structure, originally constructed out of square soft wood timbers that had been sandblasted and glued together, maintains the spiraling rings of the wood grains, from which it is composed, reflecting the materials as well as the imperfections of humanity. There is a duality to the piece that juxtaposes an image of calm serenity and erratic madness inspired by construction sites and finished buildings.
The sculptor was first commissioned to create a piece for her husband’s architectural firm. She says, “I went with them on a site visit and saw a frenetic mixture of busy work, quantities of building timbers, and what looked like chaotic activity. But then went back a few months later and saw a beautiful completed building, peaceful and tidy. It looked as though it was resting/sleeping silently before the occupants moved in to bring it all to life. So for me this piece is about 'order out of chaos' – a contemplative face coming forward from a pile of construction timbers.”
Top photo: Benjamin Goodacre