In both sport and art, outstanding performances don't just happen. The realization of a vision requires planning, training, a support team and a sustained focus on the goal. James Angus' sculptures often begin with a moment of speculation; 'What would it look like if ...?'. Their physical realisation requires a long investigation of materials and painstaking processes of fabrication. His aim is not illusionism but a glimpse of invisible physical forces that come into play when a speeding car hits a corner or a bicycle circles a velodrome. Sport offers a seemingly inexhaustible supply of metaphors to the artist. James Angus, like others, equates the challenge of realizing his vision to the training regime of the athlete. Technique must be developed and perfected. Hurdles must be overcome. Achievement is won with the assistance of a support crew. In his Mute bicycles (2008) is another of modern art's great metaphors; the inherent potentiality of matter. The bicycle is stationary but everything about it declares its capacity to move; not just the mechanism itself but the glistening lightness of the form, an entity about to spring into life. Fabricating a bicycle from scratch is not for Angus an exercise in illusionism but an opportunity to insist on the bicycle not as a mere mechanical device but as a symbol of energy and motion.


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