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ARCHETYPE

David McDiarmid

Reference

SAS0061_002

Year

2014

Dimensions (cm)

Height: 10
Length: 12
Depth: 1

Materials

Installation of 125 tiles. Plaster cast intaglio prints using oil paint

Suitable Locations for the Work

  • Wall-mounted

About the Artwork

Integral to the development of this work was the consideration of how the installation and presentation of these paintings and models in an exhibition, can influence the viewer behaviourally and emotionally, like the architecture of power is designed to do. In this case, the tiles have been presented in various iterations. For my solo show Projection, held at Interview Room 11 (2015), they were hung in 5 long rows of 25 tiles; for the Visual Artist Unit Members Show held at Generator Projects in 2016, they were hung in 5 columns of 25 tiles to form a towering presence over the viewer. I would like to see the 125 tiles displayed in different ways and different contexts making the SPG Loan Scheme a perfect way to do this.

Background, history, commissioner of the work

This piece was originally made for the RSA New Contemporaries 2014 exhibition and has since featured in a number of exhibitions across Scotland. However, the piece has been sitting in my studio space for around 2 years now, taking up space. Putting the work up for adoption has become even more pertinent now that I have moved into smaller studio space. Therefore, I am keen to free the work up for more people to see, but also to free up the space in my studio for making more works.

Thematic/contextual information

At this time, my work sought to examine the concept of megalomania in architecture; the means by which the built environment is often purposefully designed, constructed and used as a tool for power and propaganda. My paintings played with ideas of scale and form, taking inspiration from historical examples of power architecture in order to depict ambitious plans and proposals for structures which will never exist in reality. Scaffolding is a recurring motif, its significance derived from its paradoxical position as both a fundamentally temporary structure and its irrevocable status throughout the history of construction, where conceptually it time and again outlasts the permanent structures derived from it. In producing this work, I incorporated materials and processes typically associated with architecture and construction. In this case, the paintings have been made by engraving lines in sin a sheet of glass which I have 'printed' in between each line being added, by casting the surfaces in plaster. This culminates in a series of 125 tiles showing the gradual construction of an scaffolding arch of triumph.

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