Hazel Bryce spent six years pushing the boundaries of Papier-mâché to create the most complex large scale Papier-mâché sculpture in the world.
The Seahorse poses questions to all of us. As one of the many endangered species on our planet Seahorses are tragic victims of human waste and financial gain. In covering junk with the Financial Times newspaper Hazel Bryce has not only created a breath taking sculpture but has recycled a global environmental symbol to raise awareness and challenge the causes and effects of waste and greed.
The shreds of newspaper that form the Seahorse’s surface provide clues and strange snippets of society and news that led up to the millennium. With the passing of time subtle sepia tones are now emerging through this deliberately muddled mâché print mix. Hazel Bryce refers to The Seahorse as a slow and inevitable clock but to what time or event is this clock ticking to?
The Seahorse is bursting with conceptual values but it does not rely on them. It stands alone as a modern Masterpiece without the need for verbal props or a connection to status. Perhaps this is why it has provoked such a strong reaction from those who control the UK state art establishment?
Hazel Bryce is fascinated by the structures and orders that emerge from apparent chaos in nature and the formations of patterns that repeat themselves. She has thus created a symphony of extravagant shapes that extend and warp the imagination, between a natural realism and an extraordinary fantasy.
The Seahorse is stunning and can be admired simply for its aesthetic beauty. It smashes down the boundaries that separate craft and fine art; it stretches out to reach to and beyond many styles. Its complex anatomy has a realistic, organic yet spacey concern for symmetry with ambiguous body functions and an uncertain gender. The wide grin lends an almost animated expression to this modern yet classic-fantastic surreal sculpture that really has to be seen to be believed.