Llewelyn Summers

This exhibition is now closed

An exhibition of fourteen dynamic sculptures of the human form by Christchurch artist Llewelyn Summers.

Monumental concrete figures by Llewelyn Summers are well known around Christchurch and over the past few years have aroused more than one public debate. This exhibition, the sixth one-man show in his home city, highlights a selection of recent works, and displays a much wider range of subjects and materials. 

Whether large or small Llewelyn Summers' forms each have a distinctive, even imposing, air of monumentality. their constant relationship to the solid block and their real sense of 'substance' is always impresseive. This time the familiar concrete and ceramic pieces have been replaced by marble, bronze and wooden sculptures, and the nudes and lovers share exhibition space with a new group of sportsmen. 

With massive shoulders hunched above the cricket bat, flexed behind the outflung arm of the fast bowler, or balanced in the teetering structure of a gymnastics groupe, these new figures suggest a new dimension and direction in Llewelyn Summers' work. While they retain the characteristic massiveness and bulk of Summer's usual style, the sports figures also add a degree of movement. Generally speaking monumental sculptural pieces anchored to the earth. Here, however, we become aware of how the weighting of the massive figures have shifted. The dynamism of the physical action now lifts the bulk and correspondingly the balance of the figure up from the base.

If sport is our current national preoccupation how fitting that a contemporary artist should take a close look at it. An opportunity to talk with Llewelyn Summers about these ideas will also be available at the Gallery on Thursday 3 April, at 7.45pm when the artist has very kindly agreed to discuss and answer questions about his work. 

('Llewelyn Summers - Canterbury Review', Bulletin, No.44, March/April 1986, p.3)