stoned

February 6, 2020

I’m curious about how artists choose a material. Very often, they’ll come by textiles, by way of clay, metal or glass. Equally common, is an artist who experiments with any number of mediums at one time. But there’s generally one that stands out, that feels most innate. Melbourne-based Steven Clark began working as a stone mason in his native Scotland when he was 16. He then went on to study fashion, textiles and embroidery in Manchester. It was a lecturer at university that persuaded him to re-visit stone. “I was really anti construction and stonemasonry when I was at uni. I was kind of like, ‘I’ll never go back and do this’,” says Clark. “But he pushed me into the direction of using the materials I was already aware of … [He] said that ‘you need to use everything that you’ve done in the past, all your experiences. Blend that together with what you’re learning now and produce work’ …” Today Clark creates beautiful sculptures and furnishings out of whitewashed Australian limestone. His favourite tools are his chisel and axe. “You can get a lot of frustration out with an axe.” Have a look at Clark’s brand Den Holm. His sculptures are bold, bizarre and brilliantly original.

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