David Annesley: Kurumidza at Waddington Custot

David Annesley’s work pulls viewers in off the street with his magnificent, colourful sculptures that shine through the windows of Waddington Custot on Cork Street, beckoning passersby in to marvel at their beauty. The 81-year old sculptor first exhibited his steel works, which seem to defy gravity in Waddington Galleries in 1966.  His first solo show launched his name into the international art world and is sure to be revived through this current exhibition.

The exhibition is a grand display of gigantic geometric, brightly coloured sculptures from the 1960s, alongside more recent table-top sculptures, which honour the same ideas of colour, light, and movement of Annesley’s earlier work.

Annesley’s sculptures are created from welded steel and aluminium, which are then painted in vibrant colours, as well as pastel tones, to further accentuate the geometric style and light appearance of the sculptures. Annesley’s goal was to create a new realised feeling in sculpture for viewers. ‘Untitled’ (1968-1969) displays this with a circle inside a triangle, set inside a large circle, in complementary shades of pale green and blue. The use of these pale, airy colours lends a sense of weightlessness to the sculptures, disguising the huge mass of the piece.  A close friend of Annesley’s, Kenneth Noland, saw that paintings and other forms of art were getting flatter, and Noland saw that Annesley was extending the field of colour by taking his sculptures to another dimension.

Many of Annesley’s sculptures contain a similar motif of circles and triangles, in varied ratios, repeated or reduced in size. Stunning examples of this are the two sculptures, ‘Loquat’ (1965-2017) and ‘Godroon’ (1966-2017), both these sculptures relate to each other in this unique yet repetitive fashion. Both sculptures, like many of the others, use waves, and growing shapes and energetic colours. The absence of straight edges in Annesley’s designs give the illusion of movement and instability.

Devastatingly, both these sculptures, as well as ‘Untitled’ (1969-2017), were destroyed in the Momart fire of 2004. They have, however been remade this year, 2017, under the guided supervision of Annesley himself. The exhibition is an incredibly beautiful show of colours and perfect geometric shapes, that are an exquisite delight for all that visit.

David Annesley's Kurumidza is on at Waddington Custot until 6th January 2018.  More information may be found here.