Avian Form

1999
Bronze
x 150 x cm
Edition of 5

This sculpture is suggestive of a bird but yet is not quite a bird, but a hybrid creature. The stance of this creature appears to be that of a bird of prey, resting but ever watchful, shoulders hunched, wings closed. Like many sculptors before him, including Brancusi, Epstein, Picasso and Moore, Coventry has used the bird form as an expressive sculptural device. In reducing form to simple line and masses, he is able to elicit with absolute clarity the most telling avian characteristics. In working the land - Terence Coventry has a farm in Cornwall - his daily round gives him ample opportunity to observe birds and animals, both domestic and wild. These quite naturally form his sculptural repertoire, whether carved, or modelled and cast in bronze like Avian Form. This sculpture is one of a series of bird pieces. Number two stands and waits, number three is a crouching, pecking creature, whilst number four tilts forward, the head cocked enquiringly. This, the first in the series, also exists on a monumental scale.

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About The Artist

Coventry derives most of his stimulus for his work from farming. Rooted in a strong figurative tradition Coventry's sculpture explores forms familiar to him, such as bulls, birds, cows and boars and the human figure. Coventry also takes inspiration from the land, where its contrasts and changing atmosphere are detectable in the surface and texture of his animals and figures. To Coventry farming is a practical pursuit, requiring that the farmer, in addition to caring for his stock, must repair fences, gates and agricultural machinery, and tend the land. Coventry identifies similarities between farming and sculpture, through both disciplines integral need to problem solve construction issues. Coventry says: “It is elemental in the same way: one may not be dealing with clay but one is dealing with earth to a large extent. I get a tremendous amount of my inspiration for subject-matter from my association - for the greater part of my working life – with farming.”

Terence Coventry

Born: 1938