William Turnbull often worked in series, and during the 1950s the head became a persistent motif in his sculptures and paintings. Unlike Brancusi's smooth heads, the surfaces of Turnbull's ovoids are rough and worn and the features are merged into the general surface texture. Turnbull explained the attraction of the subject ‘Head’: 'The word meant for me what I imagined the world 'landscape' had meant for some painters - a format that could carry different loadings. Almost anything could be a head - and a head almost anything - given the slightest clue to the decoding. The sort of thing that interested me was how little will suggest a head; how much load will the shape take and still read head; head as a colony; head as landscape; head as mask; head as ideology.'


  • Title: Head
  • Creator: William Turnbull
  • Date Created: 1955
  • Physical Dimensions: 22.9 x 22.9 x 61cm
  • Rights: Estate of William Turnbull. All rights reserved, DACS 2015
  • Medium: Bronze

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