Sculpture Journal

The space of narrative in Caro's Trojan War

Sculpture Journal (2013), 22, (1), 97–116.

Abstract

Caro's The Trojan War (1993/4), is a complex 40-piece sculpture series given to exploring the narrative of the ancient war. This article, while it makes reference to the historical and artistic context of Caro's creation, focuses principally on the aesthetics of Caro's engagement with the narrative. It holds that in his turn to the figurative, perplexing perhaps to contemporary critics, Caro developed a new and reflexive visual strategy of representation - where the spaces of narrative are as instrumental in the work's meaning as the figures. His strategy is explained by making correlations between visual devices in Caro's sculpture and literary devices in Homer's Iliad, understanding the relation between the narrative text and sculptural composition. The relation is explained here as a hermeneutic one, where the space of the sculpture series requires an act of narrative-creation on the part of the viewer. This further imposes significant ideas on the problematic development of the figurative in contemporary sculptural practice.

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Author details

Vickery, Jonathan