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Galactic Fossil by David Partridge

Galactic Fossil by David Partridge

Partridge worked as a painter, printmaker and sculptor, becoming notable for his constructions and reliefs using nails. Born in Ohio, his family came to England when he was a boy before moving back across the Atlantic to Canada. There he studied at the University of Toronto and served in the Royal Canadian Air Force. After this he studied painting in Canada, New York, London (the Slade School) and Paris. He started his nail pieces in 1958 and in 1962 won the sculpture prize in the Montreal Spring Show. He lived in London from 1962-1974 exhibiting widely and winning a substantial commission for the Royal Garden Hotel in London in 1965. His work is included in many major collections, including the Tate Gallery, the Victoria and Albert Museum, the National Gallery in Ottawa and Toronto City Hall which contains murals by Partridge. Partridge's use of nails harks back to constructivist art of the 1920s in which non-art objects and materials were utilised in novel and sometimes controversial ways. In this work he exploits the subtle interplay of light and shade to create texture and movement. The imagery in his work was often influenced by rock formations and, as in this case, fossils; he also often alluded to his experience as an ultralight aircraft pilot and Galactic Fossil could be seen as drawing upon an aerial view of a landscape. Refs: Buchanan