So I set about making a sculpture that would represent this idea. This is how the feet (my feet) and the cloud were begun. I decided to turn these small sculptures into a necklace and to make other small works. The progression from these larger sculptures to smaller objects organically followed. The originals are sculpted in clay in the size that you see, with the idea that I would hang these pieces on a chain.
The clays are then taken to the Foundry and a lost wax process is used. Firstly a rubber mould is made from the sculptures and from this, a wax. This is inspected by me and I can adjust any areas by sculpting directly into the wax. It’s then fired in the kiln and the bronze enters the centrifuge where the wax has melted. This is a highly skilled practice for sculptures this small. The bronzes are then “finished” by removing any unwanted parts or marks. I oversee every stage and make sure each piece is finished to the original clay.
The sculptures then go to a jeweller, who gold plates them and adds the fittings. The chain was also designed for these pieces so they would hang as I envisioned them. Many craftsmen and women (and many hours) have been involved in each piece. All have been hand made and every one will be ever so slightly different. They are unique and, I hope, convey the original message of ‘Feet On The Ground, Head In The Clouds’.
The jewellery sits alongside my paintings, which are autobiographical. I really don’t see them as landscapes, they are just me using the land as a dialogue of what I feel. They represent my internal landscape. They are things and places I’ve experienced and passed through. But because I paint from memory, I only remember a place in the way I encountered it emotionally. I talk a lot about memory in my work” - Suzy Murphy, Artist
“Suzy’s paintings have always spoken to me on a very deep level, her images of a dog, a tree, a cabin, a volcano in bold sometimes vibrant almost impasto heavily defined landscapes... dreamlike but visceral, are charged with emotion. The joy of getting to show an artist’s work is always such a thrill for me, but when you also get to know and understand the artist... it’s doubled; this exhibition is about emotional connections. I met Lyndsey Ingram, her gallerist, coincidentally through a friend over lunch and was thrilled to discover she represented Suzy and was happy to show her paintings with us. It was serendipity and this exhibition seemed such a natural journey for the three of us to take; and when these small beautiful sculptural pieces taken from her work started to appear... precious, totemic... a tree, a running dog, feet, a cloud... made by hand which Suzy then cast in bronze and plated in gold; and when another mutual friend, Eliza from Felt found us the perfect gold chains, we finally had a way of showing and wearing these beautiful, limited editions of wearable art.” - Isabel Ettedgui, Connolly
“Murphy has painted her entire life and many of her subjects relate to small, quick sketches in the extensive visual diaries she has kept since childhood. The artist has travelled extensively through North America and she transfigures her memories from road trips across the country into emotive images.” - Lyndsey Ingram, Gallerist.
Suzy Murphy’s exhibition of sculptures, paintings and jewellery will be showcased upstairs at
Connolly 4 Clifford Street, London W1S 2LG
5th October 2021 - 5th January 2022