The Quick And The Dead (2015.9)

Catalogue Record

Collection

Maker

Title

The Quick And The Dead

Made in

Auckland

Date

2013

Materials and techniques

Materials for this body of work were gathered from various sites around New Zealand. including Basalt, Greywacke and Argillite.

The Northernmost gathering point was a road-metal quarry near Auckland and the Southernmost a green Argillite quarry in Colac bay at the bottom of the South Island. The sites were selected for their proximity to traditional material gathering areas of the indigenous Maori People of New Zealand.

The shapes were carved with diamond coated lapidary tools and then broken apart with a hammer or by being thrown or dropped onto a hard surface.

Dimensions

height:  2.5cm
length:  26cm
depth:  7cm

Object number

2015.9

Category

Credit

Acquired by the Crafts Council's Museum Purchase Fund and displayed at Bury Art Museum & Sculpture Centre
  • The Quick and the Dead, Joe Sheehan, 2015.9. Acquired by the Crafts Council's Museum Purchase Fund for display at Bury Art Museum & Sculpture Centre. Photo: Stokes Photo Ltd.

  • The Quick and the Dead, Joe Sheehan, 2015.9:1. Acquired by the Crafts Council's Museum Purchase Fund for display at Bury Art Museum & Sculpture Centre. Photo: Stokes Photo Ltd.

  • The Quick and the Dead, Joe Sheehan, 2015.9:3. Acquired by the Crafts Council's Museum Purchase Fund for display at Bury Art Museum & Sculpture Centre. Photo: Stokes Photo Ltd.

  • The Quick and the Dead, Joe Sheehan, 2015.9:2. Acquired by the Crafts Council's Museum Purchase Fund for display at Bury Art Museum & Sculpture Centre. Photo: Stokes Photo Ltd.

  • The Quick and the Dead, Joe Sheehan, 2015.9:4. Acquired by the Crafts Council's Museum Purchase Fund for display at Bury Art Museum & Sculpture Centre. Photo: Stokes Photo Ltd.

Maker's statement

On a practical level this body of work was a real turning point in my approach to carving. Through the shaping and subsequent destruction or breaking apart of the objects I found a fresh energy and approach, one that was particularly suited to the ideas inherent in the work. The fragment has power, often more than a complete object. The viewer has to engage a kind of imaginative faculty to ‘finish’ the object and is, I think, drawn closer to it in the process.

This body of work literally smashes together two distant points on a timeline of human technological and cultural development. Ancient stone tools, primarily the adze, a form ubiquitous to ancient cultures through time are merged with the modern and similarly ubiquitous television remote. By exploring the similarities in form, colour and size I was able to make a strange coupling with the intention of changing the viewers experience of looking at cultural artefacts and perceiving them as belonging to some ‘other’. I wanted to close that ‘distance between’ so that the viewer could see himself or herself there in the work without losing a sense of the passage of time.

Joe Sheehan, 18/05/2017