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Laura Ford

Bird Boy (without a tail), 2011

Bronze 115 x 50 x 45 cm

Laura Ford’s sculptures present a complex interplay between vulnerability and menace. She uses humour and an acute observation of the human condition to engage with wider social and political issues. Bird Boy is a figure of a lost child wearing a bird costume, which could appear as a protective disguise or a demonic curse. Standing motionless on the edge of a pontoon in the Royal Docks, Bird Boy hopes he will go unnoticed but, despite his scale, his presence is powerful and commands attention. 

Courtesy the artist.

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Laura Ford (b.1961, Cardiff) studied at Bath Academy of Art (1978-82) and completed a postgraduate sculpture course at Chelsea School of Art in London (1982-83). Ford works with soft fabrics, materials, found objects and bronze to create depictions of imagined or fantastical characters which are ostensibly sweet, though she overrides any notion of sentimentality by placing these anthropomorphic sculptures in situations that signal the unease and potential violence of socio-political power struggles.  

While still a student, Ford participated in the 1983 survey exhibition The Sculpture Show at The Serpentine and Hayward Galleries. In 2000, she was included in the British Art Show 5 and in 2005 she represented Wales in the 51st Venice Biennale. Ford has exhibited widely in the UK and internationally and her work is represented in many public collections including Tate and the Victoria & Albert Museum. 

1. Vassilis Skopelitis
2. Helen Simms
3. and 4. Vassilis Skopelitis
5. Helen Simms

Locations nearby

Emirates Air Line1 minute0.1 miles
Royal Victoria2 minutes0.15 miles

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