Tools, 1986
Minster, 1987

Tony Cragg (born 1949, UK) is one of the world’s foremost sculptors, constantly pushing to find new relations between people and the material world. In the 1980s, Cragg began to make sculptures suggestive of architecture, such as Minster, which recalls the spires of a cathedral, albeit built from scraps of rubber, stone, wood and metal.

These totemic piles of found objects and machined parts suggest an industrial counterpoint to the history of man-made achievements, while his other work nearby, Tools, made from sandstone, conveys the opposite, being hand wrought versions of mechanical aids, such as screwdrivers and mallets. Cragg sees no difference between the natural and the artificial, preferring to acknowledge the bridges between the two, the synthetic here acquiring figurative qualities in some of the bust-like tools, while his stacked turrets of spacers, washers and engine spares travel back through time to suggest archaeological accretions and geological strata.