How you dazzle the Marble? You need to discover the unreal creations of an Australian artist
Alex Seton (born 1977) is a young plastic artist from Australia with activities in several areas of art: photography, video installations, sculpture, who became famous due to his works made of marble. Probably knowing that already you will look differently (with wonder!) at the picture from the beginning of this article and the ones that follow. The marble, common element in all these creations is apparently left exactly without its defining feature. Hardness and stiffness have disappeared, being replaced by malleability, softness, fluency. Although lifeless objects, Seton's marble representations seem full of life.
This paradox is felt even more as it is known that marble is one of the toughest materials. Thus, in the past we find marble as the basic material in building many temples and sumptuous palaces, and today marble is used in the headquarters of large multinational companies and large yet simple residential projects, such as yours or the one of your neighbors. So, considering the hardness of the material, there are plenty of reasons to appreciate the work of this artist.
(in this package, only the scotch tape is not made of marble)
Beyond talent and skill and mastering impeccably the rich heritage of ancient art, we find something equally important in Seton's art. His works are loaded with contemporary messages, he addresses acute problems of modern times and the world in which we live in. His most famous work of art, exhibited in several countries, is "Someone Died Trying to Have a Life like mine". This project consists of 28 life jackets made of marble, spread on the floor of exhibition halls.
This is a clear reference to an event that took place in 2013, when 28 life jackets were found widespread on the shores of the Cocos Islands (part of Australia). The authorities then assumed that the vests would have been from a boat submerged offshore, a boat carrying Iranian refugees or Afghans seeking asylum in Australia.
“Someone Died Trying to Have a Life Like Mine”
Photo from the local press with the 28 life jackets found on the shore
"I reserve the right to respond emotionally to political issues. I do not pretend I have political answers or that I have all the answers. I was always interested in the way we treat newcomers in our society. I've been thinking about the refugees issue, because this first describes the way we actually are"- said the artist recently in an interview. His concern has deep roots: his mother fled Egypt in 1960 from the dictatorial regime of that time.
If tragedy and solemnity are the ones that dominate the work "Someone died trying to ..." Seaton also has works of art that are less tragic, yet equally serious and downright in his critical attitude. He defines himself the art he creates as "Contradiction. Enigma. Contemplation."
Being made of marble, we can say that for every day, little things we build up some sort of temples. But precisely by promoting this message, by altering the primary sense of the objects, Seton intrigue, ironize, ask questions. And all these creations could not capture life and meaning without this extraordinary material that is marble.
Next, for your pleasure, here are several other tracks in Alex Seton's portfolio. All are made of marble.
The project called "As for today ...", depicting 41 folded flags made of marble. Work of art for commemorating the 41 Australian soldiers who lost their lives in the war in Afghanistan.
“As for today” (detail)
Alex Seton was born in 1977 and graduated from the UNSW Art & Design faculty in Sydney, the city he lives in.
Photo source: designboom.com, pinterest.com