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David Dye: Devices

13 Oct 2017 – 18 Feb 2018

Release date: Tuesday, 29 August 2017

    This archival exhibition showcases the dynamic early work of David Dye, an artist who was at the heart of the radical changes taking place in British sculpture during the 1960s and 70s.

    The archive of David Dye (1945-2015), which the artist generously bequeathed to the Henry Moore Institute Archive of Sculptors’ Papers, comprises sketchbooks, drawings, films, presentation boards, photographs, negatives, project files and exhibition catalogues. This exhibition shows how he developed his interests out of sculpture into photography and film.

    David Dye: Devices focuses on the dynamic first decade of his career, showing the development of his work from 1967 to 1977. It begins with Dye's time studying sculpture at St Martin’s School of Art, and from here examines the steps he took across media and highlights the concerns that charged his work.

    As Dye wrote in an early notebook: ‘I had art history on one shoulder and the history of film on another.’ In this decade the artist used projectors, cameras, screens, mirrors and the human body in a variety of complicated configurations. Dye often referred to his works as ‘devices’ and this archival exhibition takes up this term, highlighting the ways in which he examined relationships between objects and spectators, manipulating their locations and exploring the poetics of projection and perception.

    Early drawings for sculptures, photographs of sculptures reproduced in film-like sequences, and presentation boards demonstrate Dye's consistent exploration into relationships between artwork and spectator. His sculpture ‘Distancing Device’ (1970) coordinates the movements of the viewer, while films such as Mirror Films (1972), Towards/Away from (1972) and Blind Spot (1973) control the eye with careful precision.

    Dye gained increasing public recognition for his work in the 1970s. Studio International covered his work, and he presented solo exhibitions at the Institute of Contemporary Arts (1972), Lisson Gallery (1975) and Robert Self Gallery (1976), as well as participating in group exhibitions including Young Contemporaries (1970), The English Avant-Garde (1971), The New Art (1972), Beyond Painting and Sculpture (1974) and Arte Inglese Oggi (1976). David Dye: Devices includes material related to these exhibitions, showing the contexts in which his work was being interpreted and appreciated in these years.


    Notes to editors:

    1. The Henry Moore Institute is dedicated to celebrating sculpture. It is open seven days a week with free entry to all. The Institute is an international research centre located in the vibrant city of Leeds, where Henry Moore began his training as a sculptor. The Institute’s iconic building hosts a year-round changing programme of historical, modern and contemporary exhibitions presenting sculpture from across the world.

      Each year the Institute hosts over a hundred powerful discussions, bringing the brightest thinkers together to share ideas. The Institute is a hub for sculpture, connecting a global network of artists and scholars. As a part of the Henry Moore Foundation, an independent arts charity, it is the Institute’s mission to bring people together to think about why sculpture matters.
    2. The Henry Moore Institute Archive of Sculptors’ Papers is unique in documenting the history of sculpture in Britain from the mid eighteenth century to present day. Alongside the Institute’s Research Library, the Archive, as part of the Sculpture Collection of Leeds Museums and Galleries, provides an unrivalled research resource for the study of sculpture. The Institute manages and develops the internationally renowned Sculpture Collection on behalf of Leeds Museums and Galleries.
    3. David Dye: Devices is curated by Dr Jon Wood, Head of Research at the Henry Moore Institute.
    4. David Dye: Devices is accompanied by a series of talks and events led by sculpture scholars.
    5. Until 22 October David Dye: Devices shows alongside Jiro Takamatsu: The Temperature of Sculpture in the Henry Moore Institute's Galleries 1, 2 & 3 and from 30 November alongside Becoming Henry Moore.

    Venue details

    Venue address

    Henry Moore Institute
    The Headrow
    LS1 3AH
    United Kingdom
    T: 0113 246 7467

    Opening times

    Galleries: Tuesday to Sunday, 10am - 5pm

    Research Library: Monday to Saturday, 10am - 5pm; Sunday, 1 - 5pm
    Archive of Sculptors' Papers: Tuesday to Friday, by prior appointment