about William Cobbing

Starting from a sculptural sensibility, William Cobbing’s art practice encompasses a diverse range of media, including video, photography and installation. Performative encounters are devised with material, such as clay, in which the protagonists are engaged in a repetitive and absurd cycle of manipulating formless surfaces.

The works allude to concepts of entropy, underlining the extent to which earthly material is irreversibly dispersed, giving rise to a definitive blurring of the boundaries between the body and landscape, whilst putting the possibility of conclusion on hold.


In The Kiss, for example, the heads are immersed in a shifting mass of clay, with arms and hands free to move. The concealing of the faces, probably referred to the pixilation that newsroom editors employ to protect speakers’ identities, does not allow to understand the facial expressions of the two actors.

The title causes the viewer to catch a glimpse of tenderness in the movements, but their gestures could also have other meanings, such as attempts of prevarication, of submission, of a desire to remain separate and to withdraw. By using clay the artist draws from the imaginary of man’s creation of the Sumerian mythology, of the Golem, of Frankenstein by James Whale.









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