The Sackler Landing is obviously, clearly a gallery space, so then the question to ask is: how do you reinvigorate that space?
(Richard Deacon RA)
In this new installation, Richard Deacon RA has selected a wide variety of sculptures from the RA Collection, ranging from the 18th to the 21st centuries. He explains, “I wanted to include abstraction and representation, I wanted a variety of materials. I also took the opportunity to include some things I hadn’t seen before.” There are works cast from bronze, carved from marble, moulded in plaster, constructed from wood and made of rusted steel. One is painted, another is covered with gold leaf.
Many of the works represent people in the form of portrait busts, mythological scenes and nude figures. There’s a teddy boy and girl, a study for Eros and a well-toned naked man, stretching. There are gods, actors and scientists. And there are also a dozen animals to be found in the display including flying horses, a spitting cat and a militarised mouse.
The featured sculptors, like Deacon, are all Royal Academicians: the elected artists who run the RA. Every new Academician must present a work of art to the RA after their election – this is known as their diploma work. Fourteen of the sculptures on display are diploma works.
Richard Deacon RA Selects is the first of several new displays of works from the RA’s collection that will open over the next year, with free access year-round.