Each of Jamie Salmon’s sculptures is first finely modelled in clay from which the mould is made. It is then cast in silicone and coloured with pigments; each hair is individually placed in the ‘skin’. The idea behind the work has to be strong and the execution visually intriguing so that the viewer is caught off guard by the balance between reality and unreality.
Salmon was born in the UK and began his career as an artist and sculptor in the movie effects industry before moving to Vancouver, a hub of the film industry. He likes to use the human form as a way of exploring our perceptions of what is real and how we react when our visual perceptions of this reality are challenged.
This self-portrait is a subject which Salmon has revisited a number of times. The critic, Steve Pulimood, writing for Saatchi Online in 2006 and making reference to the bronze Fragment 2, remarked that it ‘offers to the viewer a fragmented stoicism, a portrait bust of statuesque vulnerability’.
A hyper-realist bust entitled Self Portrait Fragment, by Jamie Salmon, 2013. Edition number of 3 of 5. Silicone, pigment, hair, acrylic and resin, marked ‘J. SALMON 2013’. 23 1/4 in. (59 cm.) high; 15 3/4 in. (39.5 cm.) deep. Estimate: £18,000-25,000 / $29,000-39,000. This work and the lots below are offered in our Out of the Ordinary sale on 10 September at Christie’s South Kensington
Salmon’s work is of the Hyper-realism genre and can be compared with the work of Ron Mueck who also began his career in a similar field. Hyper-realism grew from the Photorealism genre of the 1960s and 70s where the source of the painting was a photograph and the resulting image very precise and realistic.
Auzoux made more than just gorillas
A French polychrome decorated Anatomie Clastique of a human figure, early 20th century. By Maison Auzoux. 54 1/4 in. (137.5 cm.) high, on stand. Estimate: £4,000-6,000 / $6,300-9,400
Louis Thomas Jerome Auzoux (1797-1880) obtained a medical degree in 1818. In 1820 he visited the papier-mache workshop of Francois Ameline and later set up his own business making human and veterinary anatomical models in Normandy. This traded as Maison Auzoux. Auzoux, as we have seen, also made large-scale zoological and botanical models for educational use.
This ‘anatomy clastique’ of human figure, again with easily removable parts to show the full structure of the body, was made by Maison Auzoux, and comes with applied labels showing muscles and veins.
Have you got my best side?
Three German painted plaster anatomical didactic models, by Bock & Steger, late 19th century. 13 1/4 in. (33.5 cm.) high. Estimate: £800-1,200 / $1,300-1,900
Franz Josef Steger collaborated with pathological anatomist Carl Ernst Bock (1809-1874) at the University of Leipzig to produce models for the instruction of students. These were either direct casts or sculpted in plaster, porcelain or wax.
Steger is known to have inquired into the early use of plastics although it is the plaster models for which he is best known. Steger's instructive models were sold through international catalogues and scientific shops in Germany.
This lot comprises two half head sections and a cross-section of the epidermis and dermis, each with pressed metal label for ‘Bock-Steger Lips’. Each is stencilled with an inventory number.
How to get ahead in Japanese theatre
An unusual Japanese lacquered wood model of a male head. Meiji Period, late 19th century. 16 3/4 in. (42.5 cm.) high. Estimate: £4,000-6,000 / $6,300-9,400
With glass eyes, human hair and bone teeth, and mounted on a later perspex stand, this realistic head was possibly made in the Japanese tradition of mask making for use as a theatre prop.
Don’t forget the key!
A Chastity Belt (or Girdle of Venus), 19th century. Entirely of iron, formed of two pierced plates hinged in the centre, with hinged waistband, and secured by a bar and spherical padlock. 8 ¾ in. (22.2cm.) deep, 9 1/2in. (24cm.) x 12in. (30.5cm.) diameter. Estimate: £700-1,000 / $1,100-1,600
The idea of a chastity belt stems from medieval Christian theology in which figurative references to the protection of virtue can be found in religious texts from the 6th to the 14th centuries.
The literary idea of the locked metal belt worn to maintain virtue or to prevent promiscuity first comes to light in the 18th century with a version described in Voltaire’s poem Le Cadenas (The Padlock) of 1724. A number of encyclopedias also described chastity belts in terms of real objects, almost certainly with theories invigorated by the contemporary view of the Dark Ages.
Following on from the literal creation of these objects, it stood to reason that physical examples should be sought out and displayed. Metal belts with serrated openings and elaborate piercings began to appear in collections in Europe during the 19th century, perhaps inspired by 16th century satirical prints depicting adulterous wives wearing the contraptions.
A 16th century pattern for such objects has been recorded in the Armeria of the Palazzo Ducale in Venice since 1548, with serrated openings and straps formed of short hinged bars. Such an object could not have been worn for much time without causing injury indicating that its purpose was torture rather than the insurance of fidelity.
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