Des Hughes, Armature
10 October – 23 November 2013
201 Whitecross Street
“A finger had poked its way out of the drain-hole
in the basin. A human finger. For a moment it froze, as if aware it had been discovered. Then it began to move again, feeling its wormlike way around the pink porcelain.”1
ANCIENT & MODERN presents Des Hughes’ first exhibition in the gallery since his solo presentation at Frieze artfair in 2010. With new groups of sculptures that include grinning charcoaled apples, traditional cross-stitch and his distinctive cast resin sculptures mimicing their original sources, Hughes continues to have at its heart a wry humour often manifest in his use of words in watercolours and now thread, combined with a thorough immersion into the traditional materials of sculpture.
A robust sense of imagery recalls classic British horror with a tender acknowledgement of 20th century modernist canon while reimagining a pre-romantic and more medieval moment,whose sombre world view was of the transience of life, the futility of pleasure and the certainty of death.
Des Hughes (b.1970) will have a solo exhibition at Hepworth Museum, Wakefield in 2014.
He recently curated ‘Everything’s Inevitable‘ from the collections at Manchester Art Gallery in association with a major acquisition by the museum. He is currently exhibiting at Galerie Buchmann, Berlin and this summer showed in the Artist’s House and gardens of New Art Centre, Salisbury.