We don’t focus much on sculptures here on TAE, but we can appreciate them especially the more unique ones that catch our team’s keen eye for the unusual. On our search for the unusual, one of my creatives encountered the steel works of UK artist Kendra Haste.
The British artist uses chicken wire to create fascinating works of art, both for public display and private collections, not just for her home land but abroad too. Since graduating from the Royal College of Art back in 1998, she has established herself in her field having had her work displayed at London’s Waterloo Station (a huge elephant), as well as at the Tower of London (13 different works commissioned by Historic Royal Palaces since 2010).
“My sculptures are depictions of individual animals I have encountered, those I have spent time observing or who have left a deep impression on me,” she thinks back on times she’s spent in the wild to study animals she’d create statues of. “These are unique portraits, rather than stereotypical, generalized interpretations of a species.”
When asked why she prefers such a seemingly ordinary material for her extraordinarily specific art, Kendra replies that she’s fascinated how such material would be capable of suggesting “the sense of movement and life, of contour and volume, the contrasts of weight and lightness, of solidity and transparency—values that I find in my natural subjects.”
As far as choosing to create animal sculptures, she says, “What interests me most about studying animals is identifying the spirit and character of the individual creatures.” She then explains that she tries to “create a sense of the living, breathing subject in a static 3D form, attempting to convey the emotional essence without indulging in the sentimental or anthropomorphic.”
This stems from a practically animal-less childhood, she recalls. “I was brought up in London, a childhood with few animals and little experience of wild places or even the countryside. Mine was very much an urban experience, separate from the natural world. My attraction to wild animals was born of the desire to connect with and discover something in their nature which has long ago been lost within ourselves.”
Thanks for reading!