Assemblage is an artistic process. In the visual arts, it consists of making three-dimensional or two-dimensional artistic compositions by putting together found objects. As humanity’s pile of ‘discardables’ is stacked at its highest, assemblage art no more becomes an object of whimsy, but can now be observed as a sensible and planet friendly endeavour as it perpetuates reuse in a field where it is the least practised.
Exploring the impact of this innovative style is Sean Avery, a writer-illustrator of children’s picture books, a graphic designer and a sculptor. Sean got his BA in Graphic Design in 2010 and landed his first publishing deal in the same year for a book titled ‘All Monkeys Love Bananas’.
When asked about his unusual focus on discarded objects as a source of material for the creation of an artistic form, Sean shares,” I see a lot of beauty in discarded objects – I strive to find a good use for them the second time around. My aim is to bring out their inherent beauty for the world to see and enjoy!”
The material that he invariably zones in on is anything that is defunct and man-made – CDs, DVDs, computer hardware, vinyl records, clock gears and the like. He waves his magical wand on them and, Voila! What is created is something that is surprisingly precious and covetable as opposed to the substances it was fashioned from.
When asked if the material helps him conjure up the final object or if he carries an image of the object in his mind and then goes looking for the appropriate material, Sean clarifies, “I usually have a subject in mind and source the appropriate materials to suit its creation.”
To avoid running the risk of getting bored and abandoning a project mid-way, Sean sees to it that the labour involved in any given project doesn’t extend beyond a week. The longest time spent by him on a single creation has therefore never gone beyond three months.
Sean’s breathtaking sculptures are all about repurposing the discarded to create something beautiful. Pictures of his work have appeared in newspapers and magazines all around the globe and have even made it to the front page of almost every popular blog, trend site or news site you can imagine. “I have built many pieces for private collectors and galleries all around the world and have set up several displays in Perth, which include Scitech, Woodside Plaza and Remida. ‘Ripley’s Believe it or Not’ have recently purchased some of my sculptures for display in their Hollywood and Baltimore museums.” shares Sean proudly.
We have seen Sean’s interpretations of several birds and animals, like the meerkat, the bear, the hummingbird, the owl, the rhino and many more. All we now have to do is to try and imagine how soon and what he is going to trap in time forever!
Text By Mala Bajaj
Photographs Courtesy The Artist