25 October to 22 November 2017 – Opening Thursday night 26 October 6 – 8 pm
The head of Zeus, standing almost a metre high, king of the gods of Mount Olympus by sculptor Adrian Spurr image by Kerrie Pacholli © pationpics.com
I first met and interviewed Adrian Spurr at his St Kilda, Shakespeare Grove Studio #16 in the lead up to the St Kilda Art Crawl. Within minutes I knew I had found a local artist with a clear light connection to his environment and his art. It was the first Saturday of the month and his studio was open to the public to coincide with the Farmers Market. The studio was busy with visitors which made taking photographs of the artworks tricky. Many of the people had been to the studio previously. In fact they regularly visited to see what new work was underway and how other works had been resolved. Adrian welcomes visitors to his stone carving sculpture studio and enjoys the conversing with all ages and particularly with visitors from other countries that come to enjoy the St.Kilda vibe.
His sculptures are iconic and dynamic. How often does one encounter a 250 kg hand carved sandstone head of Zeus? The answer is, not often! Stone carving is an art form of incalculable antiquity and few artists currently work in this medium in a figurative way. As summer approaches he will be conducting stone carving classes for no more than four people at a time to run over four consecutive weeks. The course will end with an opportunity to display work in his studio on Farmer’s Market day.
But Adrian not only cuts stone, he also assembles sculptures, some made of huge quantities of small wooden pieces that he cuts, shapes and glues together into three dimensional forms that often encrust and consume other objects associated with humanity. Some of these sculptures have over 4000 small wooden pieces painstakingly stuck together.
Being a keen recycler myself I love the fact that Adrian chooses found objects and materials to incorporate in his art and discovered that Adrian has large quantities of found material just waiting for transformation.
Originally from the UK, Adrian has lived and worked across the globe and decided to settle in St Kilda some 20 years ago. He is hugely energised by the St. Kilda dynamic and the beautiful Community Gardens and Veg Out friends where his studio is to be found. He also finds inspiration in the wide open spaces of the Wimmera, which is known for its resilience and pioneering attitude and Italy, for it’s fine art and culture.
Human foot by sculptor Adrian Spurr image by Andre Le Coz © pationpics.com
The prints that are also on display at his exhibition ‘me human’ were made at the Sunshine Print Artspace (SPA) which is an open access print workshop and where Adrian is a co-founder and co-director. This incredible space is closely allied with the Fundere Fine Art Foundry where the four extraordinary, one and a half times life sized bronze mounted Boer War horsemen were poured. These horsemen by the sculptor Louis Laumen are now on Anzac Parade in Canberra.
I had the opportunity to work with Adrian in creating a pop up gallery at 33 Fitzroy Street St Kilda. Through that rich experience I discovered that Adrian is at the top of his game as a master print maker, sculptor and educator. Significantly, I also discovered that Adrian is an energetic powerhouse and prolific creator of art with an exceptional and expansive community vision.