Sir Eduardo Paolozzi

Michelangelo’s ‘David’

?1987

Medium
Plaster, plywood and string
Dimensions
Object: 310 x 240 x 210 mm, 7.2 kg
Collection
Tate
Acquisition
Presented by the artist 1995
Reference
T06944

Display caption

Paolozzi was walking past Harrods store one morning and saw a window dresser setting up a display which included a plaster cast of the head of Michelangelo's marble sculpture of David. He temporarily borrowed the cast from Harrods and had another cast made from it at the Royal College of Art. Paolozzi sawed his cast in pieces and glued wooden blocks in the cuts. The attack upon the cast is partly a comment on the great plaster cast collection of antique sculptures that used to belong to the Munich Academy of Arts, and which was largely destroyed during student riots in 1972. When Paolozzi was a student at Edinburgh College of Art in 1943, part of the teaching was to draw from casts of Michelangelo's David.

Gallery label, August 2004