Calculus

Calculus 2009 2 x 3 m natural stone on gesso Sue Lawty, Calculus, 2009, 2 x 3 m, natural stone on gesso. (photo credit: John Coombes) Calculus “…To see a World in a Grain of Sand…” William Blake I wanted to take something tiny & insignificant; very small stones unnoticed underfoot on a beach, out of context… and through repetition and scale of work, subject the viewer to be made small in their presence. Each tiny insignificant speck of stone bears witness to the vastness of geological time. Time so immense it renders us, humankind, as the real speck; ourselves an insignificant blip in the earth’s history. The original rock would have been formed and then subsequently broken down and eroded over millions of years. Each resultant gravelly mark of stone has been rumbled and rolled, tossed and turned, pounded and shoved relentlessly in and out on tides twice a day, every day for years… until now… halted on the verge of becoming sand. Calculus: – the study of change in the same way that geometry is the study of shape and algebra is the study of equations – a branch of mathematics originally based on the summation of infinitesimal differences. – a particular method / system / logic of calculation or reasoning – Latin for small stone * * * * * * Since working on the Order installation at the V&A a few years ago, I have been harbouring ideas to make more large stone drawings and have finally had the opportunity to do it. Calculus is a 2 x 3 m work using tiny stones (some not much bigger than sand). I have been developing and making the piece over the last five months for the exhibition Taking Time: Craft and the Slow Revolution. The exhibition, curated by artist Helen Carnac brings together nineteen international artists, makers and designers whose creative practice explores and connects to the philosophies of the slow movement. Helen is running a blog and website: Making a Slow Revolution The exhibition is currently at the Waterhall, Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery until 4th January, after which a UK tour is planned to June 2011. The words above are from the catalogue and outline the thinking behind the work.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *