Walking Woman

2009
Painted bronze, Bronze
217 x 76 x 125 cm
Edition of 4

Walking Woman is in keeping with Sean Henry's sculptural oeuvre which is characterised by its verisimilitude and focus upon the human condition. The subjects of Henry's art are anti-heroic individuals, unnerving in their ordinariness, who often exude a sense of longing and melancholy to which viewers frequently relate. Consequently, Henry's outdoor works provide an ironic contrast to the history of traditional public monuments and their celebration of conventional heroism. Henry's work is also characterised by his frequent manipulation of scale. Scaling up, and down, imbues his works with a sense of otherness which serves to make strange what would otherwise be relatively unremarkable. Walking Woman, at an imposing 2.2m tests the relation between materiality and meaning. This sculpture, the first edition of which is positioned within an international Bank, depicts a steely, purposeful figure who, in this context, can be read as a discreet capitalist avatar. However, within the context of the Cass Sculpture Foundation, Walking Woman is juxtaposed with her new sylvan setting in which she is now incongruous. She takes on new meaning as a result of her disorientation and solitude. Sean Henry's skill in modelling and his sensitivity towards his chosen patinas contributes both to reality and a state of mystery.

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About The Artist

Sean Henry's sculptures deal with the tension between the making and staging of figures that seem to belong to the real world and the degree to which they echo our experiences and sympathies. Henry plays with scale and perception, almost always avoiding life–sized representation. He explores the narrative capabilities of sculpture through a variety of means: by using more than one figure, by the economical use of contemporary iconography and by a masterful ability to suggest psychological presence. His figurative sculptures are self–contained, often pensive, and preoccupied by their inner imaginings and on occasion verge on melancholic representations of our human existence.

Henry's public works include Walking Man in London's Holland Park (2000), Man With Potential Selves in the centre of Newcastle-Upon-Tyne (2003) and a nine-figure permanent installation at the headquarters of Standard Chartered Bank in the city of London (2008). In 2007 Henry completed Couple - the UK's first permanent offshore sculpture, a critically acclaimed 13m high and 20m wide painted bronze and steel sculpture located 300 meters off the coast of Northumberland, at Newbiggin Bay. More recent installations include Standing Man in Stockholm city (2010) and Lying Man at the Frederik Meijer Gardens and Sculpture Park in Michigan, USA (2011).

Sean Henry

Born: 1965

Other Artworks by Sean Henry at CASS

2011

Folly (The Other Self)

Traditionally a folly is a decorative building or structure with no discernible use or explicit raison d'être. Its place…

2000

Man with Potential Selves

In this sculpture there are three views of a man. His identity should not concern us, but the arrangement of his body in…

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