The Light Machines of Conrad Shawcross

It is difficult to define the Lightwork series of Conrad Shawcross – sculpture, installation, perhaps even performance.  His pieces are typically large machines that move and spin bright lights in a manner that is somehow at once mechanistic and human.  The sculptures are built of elaborate machinery similar in appearance to factory robots.  However, in a way Shawcross juxtaposes the utilitarian appearance of his machines with their art-making purpose.

He says, “I really like them as unfinished objects. The minute they turn, you are left in a much easier position of ‘ok, that’s about a spinning light bulb’. But before they operate, you have to be more aggressively thoughtful to try and work out what they are for.” (via)

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