The work of Ben Applegarth in ‘Lost In The Woods/Getting Better’ is concerned with evolving geometrical structures, a fascination with mathematical patterns and the literal and figurative role of perspective. The sculptures are constructed to be looked at from various positions, their designs reminiscent of cognitive illusions; inferring shapes, curves and other false perceptions from the repetition of straight lines. Diverge/Converge (Hibari) contains an example of the ‘Hering Illusion’ – named after its discoverer, German physiologist Ewald Hering – where two straight and parallel lines are viewed in front of a radial pattern (like the spokes of a bicycle), the two lines then appearing as if they were bowed outwards. The works’ titles come from a literal interpretation of composition and include references to musical pieces that are of personal significance to the artist.
Applegarth is interested in the rigour of the methods used to create a piece of work: the progression from experiment to elaborate construction, and of working on a material to a high level of finish. He is creating an ongoing series of works consisting of geometric shapes and Platonic solids – three-dimensional, complex, regular polygonal forms named after the Greek philosopher Plato – using the selective repetition of lines to create the complex sculptures.
Ben Applegarth was born in County Durham, in 1990, and lives in Newcastle upon Tyne. He studied BA Fine Art at Newcastle University 2008-12. He has exhibited nationally in group and solo exhibitions and was longlisted for the Aesthetica Art Prize in 2013.
FIRST PERSON DRAWING STATEMENT:
The designs of the works all begin as small sketches that have the main impression of what I want the final sculpture to achieve, after a gestation period I commit the designs to a vector drawing that is to scale with fine details worked out. The wooden components are typically a frame for the drawings, the thread is the drawing itself and the Plexiglass is both a boundary and container to assist the transition to three-dimensionality.
You can find out more about the exhibition and venue by visiting Vane’s website