Sculptural Textures and the work of Sharon Kelly

The sculpture that 33 Minutes aspired to create was imagined as one of a natural and raw look. Taking everyday objects and textures and amalgamating them into something that is peculiar but beautiful. Looking into ways of creating a sculpture that resembled a cocoon, the group experimented with many different materials. Beginning with black, red and blue dog leads with wire running throughout them to enable an angular aesthetic to the sculpture, the group made a prototype sculpture but ran into difficulty when trying to determine how to make the wire less obvious aesthetically. After deciding that wire was not the right material to use, the group also realised that the colours were taking away from something that was originally intended to be an organic looking mass of dog leads and therefore, decided that bleaching or painting them was the obvious answer, as this decision aided the scent of the piece which added another level of intrigue and meaning. When we had decided to have the sculpture completely white, we looked into ways of layering and texturizing the materials to create the organic look that we wanted. Sharon Kelly’s art work portrays cloth and garments in varying ways, Sverakova states that “the aesthetic function [of the cloth] isolates the object from the everyday use and fastens our attention powerfully to it” Kelly did this with garments and cloth; however, we would be using dog leads, coat hangers, toilet paper and baby powder. Although this creates an entirely different outcome to Kelly’s work, it has a similar goal. Kelly’s installations also encompass drawings of body parts, people appear to be trapped within the sculpture, this visual relates strongly with the vision that we have as a group of the sculpture. The difference being that we as performers would be ‘trapped’ inside the sculpture instead of it being pictures of people and body parts. 

Confirmation and Denial 1989

Confirmation and Denial 1989 (1) by Sharon Kelly

confirmation and denial 1989 (3)

Confirmation and Denial 1989 (2) by Sharon Kelly

Confirmation and Denial 1989 (2)

Confirmation and Denial 1989 (3) by Sharon Kelly

(Photo’s: – Confirmation and Denial by Sharon Kelly. Accessed 22nd November 2013)

The varying mediums within Kelly’s work provide an interesting feel, and the suspension of the piece is incredibly fascinating. The clinical environment in which they are presented is also a stimulating factor for the 33 minutes performance as it gives an unnerving and sterile feeling to the artwork, contradicting the feeling of the actual piece of art completely and subverting emotion. Kelly’s website states that the “ephemeral nature of the work, imagery and choice of materials were a contemplation on the nature of the relationship between art and life” (Kelly, 2013)This comment is completely relevant to the 33 Minutes sculpture as it is a contemplation of nature, rebirth and also an attempt at creating something that combines living people with an art work.


Works Cited

Sverakova, S (2009) ‘ The Aesthetic Function of Cloth in Drawings by Sharon Kelly’, Textile: The Journal of Cloth and Culture. 7 (2) 204-215.

Kelly, S (2013) Drawing Installation [Online] Belfast. Available from: [Accessed 21 November 2013]



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