Sam Harrison initiates his making with an enviable capacity to describe. His facility is more than uncommon, but what makes his work so special is his knowing distrust of that facility and the knowledge that this practice in both drawing and sculpting demand constant disassembling to move forward.
Harrison’s observations of the human form go well beyond the skin and sinew. His is a quietly intrusive eye that captures the psychology and emotion of the figure without falling prey to theatre. These new inks and bronze sculpture demonstrate that when this facility is challenged by constraints of time and material, that what he produces becomes even more compelling. The inks are fast – just a few strokes and yet they carry all the critical information that he has accumulated in his investigative drawing. The sculptures too carry this energy – they are conceived slowly and made with vigour and speed.
Harrison’s work has been warmly acknowledged in Australia and Europe. Two of his woodcuts were acquired by the National Gallery of Australia, Canberra and his major commemorative bronze for the Woollahra City Council continues to be well loved on its site in Blackburn Gardens. More recently he has been commissioned for private collections in Sydney, Canberra and Perth, and in October last year, unveiled a major concrete work of a Bathing Figure, for the Scape Public Art Season in Christchurch.