James Capper (b. 1987)
Artist's Resale Right ("Droit de Suite"). Artist's… Read more
James Capper (b. 1987)

Nipper (Long Reach)

James Capper (b. 1987)
Nipper (Long Reach)
painted steel, hydraulics and plaster, in two parts
overall: 41 ¾ x 56 ¼ x 12 3/8in. (106 x 143 x 31.5cm.)
Executed in 2012
Hannah Barry Gallery, London.
Acquired from the above in 2012.
London, Saatchi Gallery, New Order: British Art Today, 2013 (illustrated in colour, unpaged).
Special notice
Artist's Resale Right ("Droit de Suite"). Artist's Resale Right Regulations 2006 apply to this lot, the buyer agrees to pay us an amount equal to the resale royalty provided for in those Regulations, and we undertake to the buyer to pay such amount to the artist's collection agent. VAT rate of 20% is payable on hammer price and buyer's premium
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Please note that the catalogue illustration for this lot is incorrect. Please refer to the image online.

Lot Essay

James Capper demolishes the boundaries between sculpture and engineering, making machines with a life of their own. Nipper suggests an existing piece of industrial equipment, but was in fact built from scratch: its playful name and exaggerated claw-like form convey a distinctly crablike aura, imbuing mechanical aesthetics with a lively anthropomorphism. Having long been fascinated by the relationship between drawing and welding, Capper has even rigged up mobile sculptures that dig and bite into the ground, effectively drawing in the earth. Building from what he calls ‘dream drawings,’ his works are born through an involved process with his industrial supply chain, which he embraces with a tradesman’s enthusiasm. ‘I needed to be able to delegate as well as manufacture things that are true to the drawings and the ideas. Being a good drawer and being a good welder means that the principles and the skeleton of the sculpture are together. Then, moving from the studio to the powder coaters allows it to be painted very well. Their work is fantastic. Being able to work with the hydraulic engineers who make the hoses is also fantastic.’ Art and engineering are cheerfully combined. ‘If you were to walk into the studio,’ he says, ‘you would think it was a manufacturing shop. I occasionally people dropping in and saying, “Hey, do you reckon you could weld this up for me, mate?” I have to try to explain to them. Sometimes we give in.’

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