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Artist Award Scheme in focus: Bob Spriggs, Jade Montserrat, James Lake and Nancy Allen

    Recently, the Henry Moore Foundation awarded more than £60,000 of funding to directly assist 40 artists in response to the Covid-19 pandemic. Each week will be focusing on a selection of those artists and celebrating the work that they do.

    Bob Spriggs


    Science is both the physical medium and inspiration for Bob Spriggs' work, simultaneously its raw material and concept. His large-scale kinetic sculptures are monuments to physics, with works such as Community, an installation comprised of one hundred magnetic pendulums, revealing much about the invisible forces surrounding us. Driven by the interactions of their magnetic fields, the pendulums are in constant, hypnotic motion, the slightest movement rippling across the entire field.

    With a background as a scientist and educator, Spriggs has spent a long time encouraging others to explore the beauty and creativity of science. His artworks, while appearing simple on a surface level, have layers of complexity that encourage further inspection and interaction, unveiling new insights into the poetry of physics to those who choose to engage with them.

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    Jade Montserrat


    “The Henry Moore Foundation's generosity is incredible, and the support of my work is encouraging and inspiring - I feel not only buoyed but strengthened and optimistic, and have even more determination to continue making, to make contributions in creative thinking, dedicated to research and future building.

    Henry Moore was also the recipient of grants, which sustained and nurtured his creativity and long term, in turn, these cash injections benefit everyone who continues to learn from and enjoy his work. I aim to do the same, to use this grant as a means to develop and learn and collaborate and extend my privilege.

    I am very grateful to be included as a recipient of this grant and have a constant whirring in my head about the adventures to come, not least the Foundation's offer to visit their sites in London and Leeds. I feel extremely lucky to be in even closer dialogue with Moore's legacy.”

    Jade Montserrat

    Through performance, installation and text, Jade Montserrat explores race and representation in the north of England from her black diasporic perspective.

    Her work is cut through with observations on activism, celebrity culture and disparity rooted in gender, racial or class bias. Deconstructing stereotypes and linear narratives, Montserrat offers a distinct critical insight into societal values, cultural production, and the scars inflicted by structural racism.

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    James Lake


    Working with the medium of cardboard for its immediacy, availability and low environmental impact, James Lake creates elaborate and sophisticated sculptures that push the material far beyond its normal utilitarian purposes. Life size, three dimensional portraits of people and animals, anatomical models, furniture and a monumental-scale commission for Lucca Biennale 2018 have all been executed in his inimitable style.

    Lake began working with cardboard as a teenager; at age seventeen he was diagnosed with bone cancer, and following the amputation of his right leg he searched for an accessible and readily available material that he could work with from his bedroom while rehabilitating.

    Ingrained in Lake's process is the desire to teach and demonstrate his techniques. Working with schools and community groups, cutting across all ages and abilities, Lake explains that he wants to "make sculpture accessible and blur the boundary between high art and low art. I believe in art for all; art beyond race, gender, age, ability and disability."

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    Nancy Allen


    Nancy Allen's sculptural practice combines everyday objects with decorative elements: coating empty cardboard boxes with tiles, upholstering found objects in strange fabric, stitching jewellery into furniture. The resultant objects are useless, yet hint at some other, half-formed purpose.

    Having left the realm of functionality, her sculptures focus their attentions on seizing the gaze of their audience, generating what appearance they can to hold their place in the world.

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