Conflux: A Union of the Sacred and the Anonymous, presents over twenty sculptures by Sean Henry in expected and unexpected places in the environs of Salisbury Cathedral. The exhibition of sculptures made in clay, cast in bronze and painted is a modern updating of the pre-Reformation tradition of sculptural polychrome human figures. These are positioned amongs the Cathedral’s collection that includes works by Elisabeth Frink, Gabriel Loire, William Pye and Emily Young. A notable public sculpture by the artist is Couple placed offshore on the Northumberland coast at Newbiggin-by-the-Sea.
“Conflux means a bringing together and this exhibition unites Sean’s contemporary, secular sculpture with our existing medieval, classical sculptures. The Cathedral’s ‘sacred’ sculptures celebrate historically important men and women and the glories of faith whilst Sean’s sculptures depict the humanity of contemporary secular man and pay homage to the ‘anonymous’ and unknown.” Canon Treasurer Mark Bonney, chairman of the Cathedral’s Exhibitions Committee
“This Cathedral is not a museum but a living building and its significance comes from the community who uses it and visits it. It is my hope that my anonymous figures will in some small way memorialize the everyday presence of people in this space, drawing attention to their role in its history and the significance of the here and now, as well as making people think about the building’s existing sculpture in a different way. The exhibition also invites us to contemplate the role of the Cathedral today and the evolving nature of art in religious environments.” Sean Henry
The Cathedral’s Education Department programme of free tours and events supports the exhibition with workshops, talks and discussions. An exhibition of drawings and a maquette of Folly (The Other Self) by Sean Henry is at Sarum College, 19 The Close, Salisbury, until 26 August.
Image: Sean Henry. Man With Cup. Salisbury Cathedral. Photo: Ash Mills.