Sir Eduardo Paolozzi

Forms on a Bow


In Tate Britain
Sir Eduardo Paolozzi 1924–2005
Bronze on oakwood base
Object: 555 x 648 x 267 mm
Presented by the Contemporary Art Society 1958

Display caption

Paolozzi lived in Paris between 1947 and 1950. He was greatly influenced in this period by the early surrealist sculptures of the Paris-based Swiss sculptor, Alberto Giacometti. Here Paolozzi has explored Giacometti’s use of open or transparent structures, and of forms that evoke memories of organic and mechanical objects. The sharp protrusions of some of the elements strung between the two ends of the ‘bow’ suggest an interest in brutal instincts. Paolozzi made a preparatory sketch for the work, which is also in Tate’s collection.

Gallery label, September 2016

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Catalogue entry

T00227 FORMS ON A BOW 1949

Not inscribed.
Cast brass, 19×25×8 1/2 (48·5×63·5×21·5).
Presented by the Contemporary Art Society 1958.
Coll: C.A.S. 1951–8.
Exh: (a) The plaster: Les Mains éblouies, Galerie Maeght, Paris, October 1949 (31 or 32), as ‘Sculpture’; 1950 Aspects of British Art, I.C.A., December 1950-January 1951 (23). (b) The brass: British Council, New Aspects of British Sculpture, Venice Biennale, 1952 (British Pavilion, 143); British Council tour, Young British Sculptors, U.S.A. and Canada, 1955–6 (46); British Council tour, Victor Pasmore, Eduardo Paolozzi..., Venice Biennale, 1960 (British Pavilion, C), and Belgrade, Paris, Amsterdam, Brussels and Scandinavia, 1960–1 (30).
Repr: Art d'Aujourd'hui, série 4, No.2, March 1953, p.7.

This, the only cast, was commissioned by the C.A.S. when the plaster was shown at the I.C.A. exhibition of 1950–1. It was cast in sections and welded together. For a study for this sculpture see T00450.

Published in:
Mary Chamot, Dennis Farr and Martin Butlin, The Modern British Paintings, Drawings and Sculpture, London 1964, II

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