Claire Barclay creates prints and sculptures, and typically produces works in response to a specific space. For GENERATION, Barclay has been commissioned to make a new installation. Entitled Trappings, 2014, the installation was made especially for the room in which it is shown. In making this new installation, Barclay responded to an earlier work, entitled Welcome for Sea and Game, that she had made in 2001 at the arts space Bulkhead in Glasgow.
Although Barclay’s sculptural works are abstract, the textures, forms and colours that she uses are often bodily and evocative. She is interested in the physical and psychological properties of materials and how we experience the objects and matter that surround us. In Trappings, three wooden structures act as a frame for sculptural objects and materials that have been manipulated in different ways: wool is pulled taught to create tension, leather straps hang loosely, and bulbous ceramic and brass objects are placed alongside printed fabric. Barclay handcrafted and fabricated these elements in her studio and then went on to create the detail of the composition in the gallery through a process of improvisation. As well as openings, Barclay has created barriers and areas that are inaccessible. She has spoken about her sculptures being in a state of ‘pause’, poised between making and dismantling. This often creates a sense of stillness or awkwardness that Barclay deliberately intends to be uncomfortable.
Barclay was born in Paisley. She studied Environmental Art and a Master in Fine Art at The Glasgow School of Art, graduating in 1993. She lives and works in Glasgow.
The artist would like to thank Bar Knight Ltd and McRostie of Glasgow Ltd.