Ian Hamilton Finlay Sea / Land Sundial 1970

Artwork details

Artist
Ian Hamilton Finlay 1925–2006
Title
Sea / Land Sundial
Date 1970
Medium Glass on wooden base
Dimensions Object: 335 x 307 x 75 mm, 1.2 kg
Collection
Tate
Acquisition Bequeathed by David Brown in memory of Mrs Liza Brown 2003
Reference
T11738
Not on display

Display caption

Ian Hamilton Finlay’s poetry moved in the early 1960s from a solely literary form to a kinetic or concrete one expressed in stone, wood, neon and other materials. This glass poem sundial suggests the shape of a sail, moving through the sea yet in sight of the land. The sun is a way of measuring time as well as fixing a position in space.

A steel rod projects from the glass to act as the sundial’s pointer, casting a shadow to the number twelve, which is 10˚ East of South, as etched in the glass.

February 2010