The horse and rider motif is something I come back to time and again. Apart from its intrinsic significances outlined below it is also the place where I go to sculpturally chill for a while. I recreate here and explore something that’s familiar but ever tempting me to adventure deeper. It’s a yardstick where I can measure myself against its challenges and like chess I feel that similarly regarded, each game will tell one much about ones current state of mind. I thought years ago about saying goodbye to it as a subject, but now I know it is metronomic.
My first encounter with ‘Horse’ was when I was very young at the RDS summer show. Around about the stables there, a tanned excited immensity clopped about. I was no taller, it seemed at the time, than its knee. Whom I was with, or even had I a hand to hold, isn’t part of the memory just pure awe at its size power and beauty. That was the start of my infection. Its immensity and the intensity I experienced was something, since then, I haven’t encountered. What has evolved in the years since has manifested itself through exploring meaning, through connectedness to and isolation from, through a take by the rubber bandits and having a ‘horse outside’ as distinct from a Subaru or a Honda Civic and what that means, through a historical interest in how human civilisation evolved to the modern era over an interwoven existence spanning 6 millennia with Horse and what that has meant and why it happened at all; what is it, about humankind, that directed it so and not least that I got taller and with it a changing viewpoint that allowed more imported empathy and connectedness to a wider world and to self. Horse was there as a subject and as a prop. As a prop it allowed me to work with the figure where the horse below could disrupt the gravity for the figure above, balance etc. My subjective expressive instincts feel the horse is for the most part, within the world of symbols, a male energy.... I’ve used the horse also as the object of Sacrifice where imagining it in a series of sculptures called ‘Horse on a Pyre.’