I recently spent some time observing the masses of tetrapods at Gyeongpodae beach, in Gangwon-do province, South Korea. Each concrete tetrapod is a four legged unit, in a roughly pyramid form that stacks in a loose, modular pattern with other tetrapods to create sea walls. En masse, they appear as giant installations of readymade sculptures.
I set about to re-create their forms, which appear simple but have a geometric complexity. In doing this I also came to realise just how much concrete is in each tetrapod. There is a tension here in the amount of heavy material used to protect coastlines from environmental degradation.
The forms of the tetrapods remain beguiling but I have chosen to fill them with air, moving in and out of each sculpture’s walls. They become much lighter objects and have also been made with only recycled and reused inflatable fabrics. As they move against each other, inflating and deflating, they behave like the waves that break upon tetrapods on coastlines around the globe. They become the storm surge.
Susie Losch is an artist living in northeast Victoria, practicing and exhibiting for over twenty-five years. Primarily working as a sculptor, Losch’s practice draws on the histories of the materials employed in making whilst allowing for their potentials and possibilities to be realised. Processes of assemblage, casting and a playful acknowledgment of moments of serendipity each contribute to a collection of works that are alive with the workings of the studio.
Currently Losch is working with air as a transformative matter. The series of inflatable works being developed consider traditions of formal minimalist sculpture and the environmental impacts of unrestrained material consumption.
Video courtesy of the Artist. Video by Jeremy Weihrauch.