Crosscut Rip Cut Column

David Nash (1945 - )

Poplar wood sculpture


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  • Image of Crosscut Rip Cut Column
  • Image of Crosscut Rip Cut Column
  • Image of Crosscut Rip Cut Column
  • Image of Crosscut Rip Cut Column
  • Image of Crosscut Rip Cut Column
  • About the work
    Country: UK
    City: London
    Place: Wales Office, Gwydyr House, Whitehall

    Carved from a single piece of Poplar wood, Crosscut Rip Cut Column reveals David Nash’s interest in, and approach to, the continuous evolution of a sculptural form. Working with unseasoned wood, Nash designed this sculpture based on the universal geometry of the cube. Although his approach has always been one of direct, physical involvement with wood and the landscape, geometric forms have fascinated Nash since the beginning of his career. As a consequence, his sculptural works can be divided into two distinct groupings: sculptures that connect, and interact with, the natural landscape; and those that are presented inside, within, and in relation to, their architectural environments. Crosscut Rip Cut Column is an excellent example of this latter group.

    Every species of wood moves, cracks and warps in a different way, depending on the conditions of its environment. Nash explores these variables by cutting and slicing into wood to create sculptures that simultaneously bear the marks of his handiwork, while retaining their autonomy as separate objects. The fascination of Nash’s sculpture lies in its unpredictability, the way the material strains to resist a form that he imposes on it. The ‘memory’ of the original tree branch or trunk is implicit in this standing column, while geometric forms created by Nash, suggest humanity’s power and ability to shape nature for its own purposes.

    Nash is one of Britain’s leading sculptors and has created a significant and varied body of work in which the relationship between human and nature is a central theme. In his own words, ‘The tree is a vegetable equivalent to human life, in that it has a similar life duration [and] mortality’. All of Nash’s work is created with this thought in mind: he believes in ‘growing sculpture’ militating against the ‘tyranny of finish’, which he equates with death.

  • About the artist
    David Nash was born in Surrey and trained at Kingston College of Art from 1963 to 1967. He later studied at Chelsea School of Art (1969–70). As a child, Nash had spent family holidays visiting his grandparents in the Ffestiniog Valley of north Wales. In 1966, he settled in the village of Blaenau Ffestiniog, where he still lives and works. Nash’s first solo exhibitions were held in 1973, and he has exhibited regularly ever since. His work has featured in important international exhibitions, including Aspects of British Art Today at the Tokyo Metropolitan Art Museum in 1982; and in 1999, the exhibition, 'Sculptors’ Drawings 1945–90', at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York. He had a major solo exhibition at Tate St Ives in 2004, and in that same year, was awarded an OBE for services to art. Nash’s work can be found in public collections worldwide, as diverse as the Tate, London, and the Hiroshima City Museum of Contemporary Art, Japan.
  • Explore
    abstract, column
    Materials & Techniques
    poplar wood, wood sculpture
  • Details
    Crosscut Rip Cut Column
    Poplar wood sculpture
    height: 99.00 cm, width: 29.50 cm, depth: 23.00 cm
    Purchased from Annely Juda Fine Art, March 2001
    Annely Juda Fine Art
    GAC number