Revealing a major new direction in Hedgecock’s practice, the monumental sculpture at the centre of The Third Stellation is the result of a meticulous act of productive destruction. Stretching out like an expanse of shattered molten lava, or an armored reptilian skin, the structure is fabricated from the artist’s output on paper spanning the last ten years. Large detailed drawings, including a two meter flayed sheep from 2001, and a three-meter tall cloaked virgin from 2003 to name a few, have been painstakingly cut and folded into triangulated facets and then glued together. One occasionally catches a glimpse of recognizable images within this architectonic folly - a fold of fabric, lock of hair, an eye or a hoof - fragments of representation lost within a vast, differentiated field of mark-making.
In geometry, a ‘stellation’ describes the three-dimensional projection of a two-dimensional plane. This relationship, for Hedgecock, echoes the fluid interface between sculpture and drawing, a dynamic that she is continuously exploring in her work, where the traditional boundaries between mark and object are often violently collapsed. In antiquity, polyhedral forms (from which stellations derive) were believed by many to underlie the flux of visible world: an idea that further fascinates Hedgecock and one that has informed much of her thinking for this exhibition.
The turbulent relationship between surface flux and underlying structure is explored elsewhere in chromatic sculptures made from an infinite number of tiny, glued polystyrene balls which not only seem to defy gravity and but also take on the baroque forms of slow-growing and accumulative natural entities such as rock-face litchen or under seabed coral forests. Likewise, Hedgecock’s drawings seek out the underlying algorithmic and geometric relationships found in nature, as if the act of drawing itself might somehow decode the structures of carbon, the minute constellations of a seeding fruit, or the skeletal remains that lie suspended within the ocean’s soft, radiolarian ooze.
Surface:Tension: Kitty Kraus, Dan Shaw-Town and Gedi Sibony, Lisson Gallery, London