15.7 – 11.9 2021
Anton Alvarez:Tight Squeeze
15.07 – 11.09.2021
Huxley-Parlour is delighted to present an exhibition by Swedish-Chilean artist, Anton Alvarez. Tight Squeeze showcases eleven heavily textured and coloured ceramic towers, Alvarez’ largest and most complex fired ceramics yet.
Alvarez’ machinery is at the centre of his practice, operating in a symbiotic relationship with the sculptures they produce. Each of the ceramics are created by a custom machine built by the artist himself, which extrudes clay through tailored moulds under heavy pressure. The squeezed clay drops onto a platform, which can be adjusted in height to create stretched sculptures of different lengths. Here, the alethic factors of chance and variation dictate the outcome of Alvarez’ work, placing him in the artistic milieu of makers like Max Ernst, Andre Masson, and the fluxus artists. Alvarez’ sculptures are then glazed, petrified in the shape they have fallen into. Hence, Alvarez’ practice raises questions about the boundaries between mechanical production and craftsmanship.
B. Sweden 1980
Anton Alvarez’s (b.1980) sculptural forms explore the relationship between human creation and mechanical apparatus. His practice focuses on technical innovation, designing systems and tools which produce fully formed objects and architecture. While remaining at the forefront of his methods, Alvarez allows his machines to dictate the aesthetics of his work. Form and texture are determined by The Extruder, a self-constructed, 3 tonne ceramic press which discharges huge columns of warped clay. While subtly dictating the direction his works take, Alvarez prefers his sculptures to appear as if they had been made within nature. Thus, he opts to use wood, ceramic, and thread, materials we interact with daily. Affording his sculptures a level of autonomy, Alvarez establishes a direct line of communication between his works and his audience.
Alvarez graduated from the Royal College of Art, London in 2012. His work is included in the public collections of the National museum, Stockholm; Denver Art Museum, USA; and the Röhsska Museum, Sweden. Recent solo exhibitions include Roman Toothpaste MXXI at Vandalorum, Sweden (2021), and The Flavour is So Strong at Larsen Warner, Sweden (2019). Alvarez’s first monograph Anton Alvarez: The Thread Wrapping Machine was published by Arvinius + Orfeus Publishing in 2015.
He lives and works in Stockholm.