Artist Profile

Steve Bicknell

Sculptor
Old Story, by Henry Gray

Artist Profile

Steve Bicknell

Sculptor

Steve will make his Talos debut in Natural Elements.

All my work is created from feel, I use no reference material, just working from how I feel inside and how my hands respond to the clay.

I started working as a sculptor just over two years ago. Initially I wanted to create sculpture just for my new garden, however once I started I became enchanted in working with my hands. Most passionate gardeners will tell you working in the earth is a wonderfully rewarding and therapeutic. It’s the stuff of life and moving on to working with clay feeds the soul.

I am totally self taught, starting very late in life which initially I thought was a drawback! But now I realise that its actually a huge benefit.

I have nothing to prove, so there is no stress or angst in creating the work. I make pieces for myself and should you like them enough to buy my work, then of course I am flattered and pleased, but if not, nothing for me is lost.

Swimmer, by Steve Bicknell

This piece is where I have recreated from memory a bronze of a swimmer I originally photographed probably during the mid 1990’s.

I was always fascinated by the muscle definition and even though I no longer have any record from the session, it has stuck in my mind.

I started by bending two lengths of rebar by hand in a vice, then I welded them together onto a steel base. The critical part of the piece is the curve of the spine, some artists are driven by straight lines and geometrical forms, I am driven by the curve! I love all curves, both in the human form and also in nature. They speak to me deeply.

As you can see I have polished the bronze for its final form, this tends to help with the muscle definition and also lets the eye travel uninterrupted through the piece.

African Torso, by Steve Bicknell

With African Torso (above), I started with a large block of clay and, using water, I just let my hands find the form. The clay often shows me the direction and I find its like a chain reaction, each form suggests the next. As you can see with the pictures this piece has a very tactile feel. The shoulders of the form have been rubbed back during patination to reveal bare bronze. The bronze then oxidises and darkens blending in against the patina, giving a feeling of age and wear.

I like also change over time, it intrigues me a lot…we are here not even for a blink of a blink, but a finished bronze in essence could last for tens of thousands of years or more. It’s a feeling I like and cherish.

All my work is created from feel, I use no reference material, just working from how I feel inside and how my hands respond to the clay. My primary work was as a corporate photographer in which I finished in 2004 after 28 years. I have a very trained eye, that helps a lot in creating work that can be pleasing from all angles. I love nature and I love people so most of my work is the human form often with a strong organic feel.

My studio is on a farm in West Sussex and I work in concrete, steel, bronze and ceramics. My pleasure is bronze, the material in its final form has such permanence and is fabulous to the touch.

Visit the Natural Elements exhibition

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