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3 of the lads (from left to right) Plague(unfinished) Death & War.

2003

In May this year I started a series of sculptures based on the “Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse” using ceramic heads I had made earlier with welded metal armour and bodywork built up around them.

As a student in 1975 I had an idea of producing a series of ceramic sculptures under the heading of "Armour of the Infinate. " but had been frustrated by the fragility of the works until safely fired in the kiln. So it got shelved. The re-occuring of the idea that now I was a grown-up and that I could actually make metal armour to enclose these heads is what prompted me to investigate MIG welding. The four horsemen seemed a lively idea as a start to these works.

Unfortunately the appearance of Lord Of The Rings films, I fear, may prompt the accusation that I'm borrowing ideas. When I sat through the first film I thought "Oh Shit!, Fantastic armour. Damn! there are going to be comparisons."

Well, "Whatever" as my kids say.

By the way I'm not a "Closet Goth". Black lipstick and fingernails , walking around perminently depressed and having multi body piercing really isn't me.

I did have my ears pierced when I was 17. Now that really hurt!

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The very first piece attempted and very experimental as I learned to use the welder . A metal worker friend generously allowed me to scrabble about scrounging off-cuts (cut by oxy-acetelyne torch) from the floor of his forge workshop (Thanks Roy!) and I utilised these bits to cover by over-lapping as much area as possible with them.

These random shapes conveyed an agressive finish which contrasted with what I considered was the "supine" features of the ceramic head within. The ceramic head is stoneware with iron oxide under an "Oatmeal" glaze.

The shoulders and back neck-piece are iron fire-grate legs that I got from a scrapyard some years ago which cleaned up and had a suitable "armourish" look. Using them speeded up the finishing of the piece but made me aware that such items used tend to prompt a "Guess what everyday items were used" game in viewers minds of sculptures that are re-cycling junk. This is something I want to avoid.

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Death and helmet . Not to happy with the insect type protruberance I put on helm which I thought was a was a good idea at the time. In 3rd & 4th pictures I bit the bullet and decided to slice it off!

Much Better! (A bit Darth Vader-ish though)

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Getting there but a bit scrawny looking, needs some shoulderpads.

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Ah that's better. Eat your heart out Victoria Principle!

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Only partially complete. (got sidetracked by working on the Nail Hare and Other Hares) I had just aquired a bucket of rusty old flat nails at a car boot sale and was taken by the decorative nature of them.

This one I definately want to have an "insectoid" type element as in "Plague of Locusts" (Cliche alert!) so I have been scouring the internet for images of the little critters. They are quite cute really.

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Not started this piece yet, though given it a lot of thought . I want to avoid cliches and not end up with something being confused with the Death piece. When the image, thought or idea happens I'll know it is the right one. (I hope)