Do You Think of Me Often

Do You Think of Me Often

Cast Sculpture

The Parkland Walk

Meadow Arts Commission 2011

Des Hughes' sculpture sits happily on the riverside path, much used by the numerous dog-walkers at Attingham. This Mile Walk is the main feature of Thomas Leggett's 1770 landscape design.

The intriguingly shaped dog is peacefully chewing on something that, on closer inspection, reveals itself as a human hand. Des Hughes invites us to enjoy role reversals and puns; this is another variation on biting the hand that feeds you (see 'Sculpture for dogs' in the mansion's Inner Library).

There is also a deeper desire to engage with the nature of our relationships with pets. They comfort us, depend on us and share our life on our own terms. But they were all once wild animals living according to nature's harshest laws. The ancestor of this, and all our beloved dogs, would not have hesitated to eat us to survive.

The dog has strange but evocative features. He is actually cast from an assemblage of woollen pieces of clothing that gives him a distinctive texture and an intriguing random shape. It follows Des Hughes' on-going sculptural investigation into materials, methods and traditions - like the cast dog biscuits in the Mansion.

Des Hughes

There is deadpan humour and ingenuity in Des Hughes’ work that belies its prosaic source material. The visual dialogue formed between the objects depicted and the materials used in their making have an almost tragicomic leaning. The work is familiar, yet odd: there is always something unexplained about it to keep the viewer intrigued.

Des Hughes studied at Bath College of Art and Goldsmith’s College, London, where he achieved his MA in Fine Art. He currently lives and works in Herefordshire. Recent solo exhibitions include Endless Endless ‘Frame’ at Frieze Art Fair and Small Collections at Nottingham Contemporary in 2010, Richard Hughes and Des Hughes, Michael Benevento, Los Angeles in 2008 and Ancient & Modern, London in 2007. His work has appeared in exhibitions at numerous well-known galleries worldwide, including the Saatchi and Tate Britain galleries in London.

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