Michael Bolus

11th Sculpture


Not on display

Michael Bolus 1934–2013
Painted steel
Object: 930 × 1830 × 708 mm
Presented by Alistair McAlpine (later Lord McAlpine of West Green) 1970

Display caption

Bolus's first abstract sculptures date from the early 1960s. '11th Sculpture' demonstrates his concern with making the constructed nature of the work as explicit as possible. It also shows his concern with flatness. Several ground based elements are connected with other fragmented forms which rise into the air. A sense of continuity linking these different elements is created by the line which runs through the centre of the sculpture. The work thus embodies a physical sensation: that of resisting gravity and rising from the ground. But it does so directly, in purely abstract terms, and without the use of illusion.

Gallery label, August 2004

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Catalogue entry

Michael Bolus b. 1934

T01352 11th Sculpture 1963

Not inscribed.
Painted steel, 36¼ x 68¼ x 27¿ (92 x 173.5 x 71).
Presented by Alistair McAlpine 1971.
Exh: The Alistair Ale Alpine Gift, Tate Gallery, June-August 1971 (14, repr.).
Lit: Richard Morphet, in catalogue of The Alistair Ale Alpine Gift, 1971, p. 56.

The sheets in ‘11th Sculpture1 have something of the unassertive factuality of cut and folded sheets of paper. This piece typifies Bolus’s obsession with continuity through and over disjunctions. The painted line is for him analogous with a vein running through discrete stones which were once one substance.

Published in The Tate Gallery Report 1970–1972, London 1972.


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