The Sculptural Processes Group is an informal study group that was set up in October 2007 to facilitate exchanges between researchers, curators, conservators and practitioners interested in questions of sculptural practice. The Group explores, through seminars and visits, various aspects of the creative, material and mechanical processes involved in making sculpture from Antiquity to the present day.
The aims of the SPG are to enable individual members to gain a more precise and nuanced understanding of the practical processes of sculpture – both through close examination of works and through discussion with colleagues from diverse backgrounds. The core group comprises a small number of academics, PhD students, curators and conservators with diverse interests from the Courtauld and other universities and museums. The Group hosts two meetings per term, one informal discussion at the Research Forum and one on-site visit to a museum, gallery or workshop, in which we aim to offer close, hands-on analysis of sculptural objects.
Since 2007 the Sculptural Processes Group has hosted a wide variety of events in and around London. These include: visits to a bronze foundry, to Wilton House with Peter Stewart (Classics Department, Oxford), to the sculpture conservation department of Westminster Abbey and to various collections and exhibitions in London. The SPG has also organised seminars, including one on stone carving by Peter Rockwell (independent), one on imaging bronze sculpture by Frits Scholten and Robert van Langhe (Rijksmuseum), one on the technical investigation of bronzes using X-Ray Fluorescence, given jointly by Shelley Sturman and Dylan Smith (National Gallery Washington), and an international conference, ‘The World Turned Inside Out: Bronze Casting in the 20th Century’.
Over the coming year we will be exploring the theme of ‘Reproduction’, both as a process of sculptural production and as a means of transforming sculptural objects.
Steering Committee: Dr Alexandra Gerstein, Curator of Sculpture and Decorative Arts, The Courtauld Gallery; Dr Jessica Barker, Henry Moore Foundation Post-Doctoral Research Fellow, The Courtauld Institute.