Cast plaster and concrete breezeblock
28 x 8 x 7 cm [11 x 3.2 x 2.8 inches]
Edition of 25 accompanied by signed certificate and bespoke MDF display box
Produced at Pangolin Editions, UK.
About the work
Priapus (2013) is a new edition based on a cast plaster work made by Lucas as part of her Penetralia series (2008), a group of totemic objects inspired by her move to the Suffolk countryside and combining casts of a penis with fragments of found flint and wood. This summer, the object - a phallus combined with a rough-hewn sword handle - was scaled-up to create a giant concrete sculpture which is currently on view upstairs at Whitechapel Gallery. Resembling a pagan fertility emblem or archaeological find, this 'life size' version combines echoes of ancient amulets with the purist aesthetics of abstract Modernist sculpture - its sinuous forms and white material call to carvings by artists such as Moore and Hepworth. In its conflation of penis and sword, the sculpture blurs metaphor and literalism in a way that echoes many of Lucas' earlier works (swords are often perceived as phallic symbols), for instance Two Fried Eggs and a Kebab (1992) in which a slang metaphor for the female body is made literal.
About the artist
One of the leading figures in an outstanding generation of young British artists who emerged during the 1990s, Sarah Lucas has exhibited extensively both in the UK and internationally. Since the late 1980s, Lucas has created sculptures and installations that focus on the body. Drawing upon everyday materials such as cigarettes, tights, furniture and vegetables, she probes representations of gender, sexuality and national identity. In recent years Lucas has combined fragments of the body with organic materials, further addressing universal concerns of nature and mortality.
Sarah Lucas (b. London 1962) participated in the seminal group show Freeze (1988), and early solo shows included Penis Nailed to a Board, City Racing, London, and The Whole Joke, Kingly Street, London (both 1992). In 1993 she collaborated with Tracey Emin on The Shop, a six-month venture on Bethnal Green Road. She has since exhibited internationally with major exhibitions including those at MoMA New York (1993), Museum Boymans-van Beunigen, Rotterdam (1996), Portikus, Frankfurt (1996), the Freud Museum, London (2000), Sarah Lucas: Self Portraits and More Sex, Tecla Sala, Barcelona (2000), and In-A-Gadda-Da-Vida (with Angus Fairhurst and Damien Hirst) at Tate Britain (2004). A retrospective of her work took place in 2005 at Kunsthalle Zürich, Kunstverein Hamburg, and Tate Liverpool. Recent international projects include 'LUCAS BOSCH GELATIN' at Kunsthalle Krems, Austria, 'NUZ: Spirit of Ewe, Two Rooms', Auckland, New Zealand (the product of a three-month residency in New Zealand), and a solo exhibition at the Museo Diego Rivera Anahuacalli, Mexico City, in spring 2012. In 2012, a major exhibition of Lucas' sculpture, Ordinary Things, took place at the Henry Moore Institute. In February 2012, SITUATION - a new gallery dedicated to her work - opened at Sadie Coles, 4 New Burlington Place, London; the final exhibition there, SITUATION ROMANS, opened in in February 2013. 2012 also saw the publication of After 2005 - Before 2012,a publication chronicling the work of Sarah Lucas over seven prolific years since the publication of her 2005 catalogue raisonn
è. Lucas has major solo exhibitions coming up at Secession, Vienna, in November 2013; and at Tramway, Glasgow, in January 2014.
Whitechapel Gallery editions are generously donated by the artists. All proceeds from the sale of these works directly support our exhibition and education programmes.
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