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Clive Sheridan: Branca, Walton Street, Oxford
Sheridan’s early life in the Cheshire countryside and his time in Australia have given him a love of the natural world and through it of texture, form and movement. Now Warwickshire-based, he makes use of weather-fallen trees, along with discarded books and other found materials to produce thought-provoking pieces of the highest quality and execution. He draws inspiration from past and present personal experiences.
This show includes collages and limited edition photographic prints. The latter are on high quality cotton rag paper, which provides a flawless finish. Untitled (Without Seeing), illustrated, is one such piece, a photograph of a collage made from two discarded printed pages, masked in a white wash with only the words ‘I mean’ and ‘Without Seeing’ discernible, the whole piece dominated by a bronze circle composed of Japanese maple leaves caught in their full autumn colours.
Sheridan also works with books and bindings that otherwise would have been shredded or gone to landfill. In Head, he uses the back and front leather gilt covers and two plain frontispieces laid over a faint section of text to represent the demise of the book itself and its transmogrification into both a deconstruction of a work of literature and a new existence as a tribal mask.
In his collage Stand up Straight, two spirit levels stand parallel to one another the ‘eyes’ of each level on a par with the other as the two unbendingly confront each other while being bound together by lengths of twine joining them as one and in the process creating the image of a face — a window on the soul or spirit. Overall the exhibition successfully balances a retrospective look at the components of each piece with the creation of new and engaging pieces of work.
n Open daily till April 30.