Paul Coldwell uses everyday objects and materials to create sculptures that embody notions of experience, memory and the passing of time. Such ideas are recorded within the environment.
The physical form and shape of the work seem to present a ‘slice’ of geological or archaeological evidence. The assembly of the bricks evokes strata, layers of rock or soil that have been laid down by natural forces.
The identification of these layers is based on fossil evidence and can help derive a sequence of time and geologic history of the Earth. However Coldwell has tamed the geology. Its construction brings to mind a man-made wall which is particularly suggested by the highly finished top left section. This implies that these notions of experience and memory, however natural, are in fact constructions and subject to change with each individual. This reflects the artist’s concern that ‘at any time, one might have to uproot, move on, and find some place else to be'.
The title of this sculpture, 'Bouquet', suggests that it commemorates a particular occasion or feeling. The permanence of the natural materials is at odds with the momentary celebrations by which we, as humans, mark the passing of our lives. Similarly the solidity of the materials contrasts with the piece’s delicate construction. This addresses the divided nature of life: permanence is always in conflict with the fragility of life.