31 March 2016
Our work of the week is Garden Ornament 2 (1914), by Henri Gaudier-Brzeska. This work is on display in ‘Beauty and Balance’ at the Fitzwilliam Museum, if you haven’t already visited be quick as the display finishes on 3 April.
In the spring of 1914 Gaudier-Brzeska received a commission to carve two stone vases or garden ornaments for the home of General Sir Ian and Lady Hamilton at 1 Hyde Park Gardens, London. This commission came through the Omega Workshops, the decorative arts and design firm founded by the artist and critic Roger Fry. However, by August 1914 Gaudier-Brzeska had left Britain to fight in the French army, so the stone vases were never carved. It is believed that this maquette, and its companion, were related to the Hamilton commission. This work is constructed from elements of two human figures who kneel and hold a large bowl with their upraised arms.
For more info see Tate