Thursday, 12 September 2013

Dead Hedwigs, Pierced Angels and Omi

A common theme of this blog is why I love working at the University - last night was another good example. An invite to the opening of another exhibition in our great Western Bank Library Exhibition Space. This time it's of the work of the Sheffield sculptor, Anthony Bennett. Anthony has been working for 30 years, but has been relatively unknown till recently. He has produced some amazing work - the Pierced Angel at the bottom of the Library stairs is really impressive

But the strangest piece of all is of The Great Omi - aka The Barbaric Beauty or The Zebra Man. He was really Horace Ridler, a British cavalry officer in WW1 who after the war decided to join the circus. He had a variety of mundane jobs, and in 1935 decided to transform himself into an exotic sideshow curiosity. He was tattooed and pierced, and this is an extremely lifelike sculpture of him. So lifelike it's creepy. I kept expecting it to wink at me.

It's a great exhibition - curated of course by the great Professor Vanessa - here she is opening it in front of another work - Humbug

If you can get to see it, it's open to the public every weekday from 0900 to 1900 and weekend afternoons - details here.

My only concern was I thought that he had killed some Hedwigs - but he assured me they were handmade...

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