Materials:Clay, Rope, Metal wire, Pulley
Dimensions:260 x 15 (circa) cm
Credit:Presented by the Contemporary Art Society, 2015
Ownership history:Purchased from the artist by the Contemporary Art Society, 19 March 2015; presented to Southampton City Art Gallery; The Shipley Art Gallery, Gateshead and York Art Gallery, as a joint acquisition, 2014/15
Made directly in the gallery space of Southampton City Art Gallery, a construction of clay is built onto a rope and hoisted as it is made. This temporary sculpture considers the choreography of making, beyond the studio or factory, and the possibility for clay to produce objects that are neither fixed nor permanent. Cummings uses a labour-intensive process of pressing clay through a tea strainer to produce a fine texture. Historically a technique used to suggest grass or fur on ceramic figurines, it is translated here onto a large-scale abstract form. After it is shown, the piece will be dissolved into water and the clay re-claimed as raw material.
The acquisition of Production Line breaks boundaries in conventional museum collecting. In contrast to previous acquisitions, the work is ephemeral, almost a performance, and will only exist in all three collections as an archive, which includes time-lapse photography and documentary film.
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