Light Years - Sculpture by Colin Figue


Colin Figue was born in England in 1943. He studied at Ravensbourne College of Art and Design from 1961 to 1965 and the Royal Academy School of Sculpture from 1966 to 1969. Between studies and following graduation, he traveled in the Middle East, Africa and South America and lived for an extended period in Spain, where he worked under private patronage.

From 1971 to 1974 he had a studio and workshop near Cambridge, England and studied bronze casting with Michael Gillespie ARBS.

In 1974, he worked in Portugal with the painter and ceramist Patrick Swift and was artist in residence at porches pottery in the Algarve from 1974 to 1976.

During 1977 and 1978 with the support of the British Council and the Portuguese government, he worked for over a year in the marble quarries of S.O.L.U.B.E.M.A. in the Alentejo and in 1980 settled in southern Portugal.

He has exhibited and worked throughout Europe and the Far East, with personal exhibitions in Germany, Portugal, Switzerland and the USA. and is represented with sculptures in Open Air and public collections in Germany, France, Italy, Portugal, Slovakia, Japan, Taiwan, China, India and the Lebanon. In 1995 to 1996 he traveled in India and carved in the temple workshops at Mahabalipuram in Tamil Nadu, an experience which has influenced recent work and his current involvement with painting.

In 1999 he was elected a member of the Royal Society of British Sculptors.

"Harmonious, timeless... the sculptures of Colin Figue are rooted in the classical tradition. Seen in the brilliant light of the Algarve, the clean edges and precise forms evoke a sense of that perennial humanist philosophy associated with Polykleitos, Alberti end Brancusi. If one were to define this quality as form and space fully realised and expressed by a working understanding of the materials, then we come close to Figue's oeuvre.

The hammer and chisel directed by a keen eye and intuitive grasp give his work a human scale and measure. The reach and sweep of the arm, the proportion of finger and hand links the sculpture to universal principles of nature and the cosmos. The works are like points of reference in an environment that becomes articulated and coherent. The boundaries define larger unending forms and patterns visualised and completed in space by the imagination. They express a dynamic harmony of opposite forces through interlocking elements, curved and straight edges, form and space. They expose the intrinsic forces already present in the stone and bring us into contact with its greater reality.

In an age when the term "monumental' has come to refer simply to size, the sculptures of Colin Figue link each of us in a very personal way to the truly monumental."

Richard Caston, Düsseldorf