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Tate Britain presents a major exhibition of the work of Turner Prize winner Richard Deacon, a leading British sculptor who first achieved international recognition in the early 1980s. Consisting of approximately forty works, this chronological survey includes large, mid-scale and small sculptures shown alongside a series of important drawings. The show celebrates his innovative use of form as well as his interest in working with a diverse range of materials.
Deacon is known for open structures where form is described not by its shape but by its boundary or edge. A number of such works are included in the exhibition. These include After 1998, a huge serpentine form which balances volume, space and material in a way that plays with the viewers’ sense of interior and exterior. Its continuous and looping form explores depth, surface and structure.
Deacon has consistently described himself as a ‘fabricator’ – a maker of things who places emphasis on the construction and manipulation of materials. This will be highlighted by a group of works from his Art for Other People series which started in 1982, made with a diverse range of everyday materials including steel, foam, rubber, chrome, leather and marble. The show will also include a series of early drawings collectively titled It’s Orpheus When There’s Singing 1978. These have been of great importance in the making of subsequent sculptures, especially those that develop the possibilities of organic and curved forms, and in his thinking about language and communication.
© Tate Britain.