Medium: Patinated and mirror polished bronze, LEDs
Dimensions: 31 in high x 125 in wide x 32 in deep
Barry’s Muscularity is composed of four horizontally arranged, dark patinated ellipses, each barnacled with a light-emitting coque. Each coque, in turn, possesses a warm golden interior and an inset mirror-polished plate, which, in sum, give forth a unique, warm, and nuanced light. This unique piece required 840 hours of production time, plus conceptual and design time.
As with all of Niamh Barry's work, Muscularity is inspired by forms and movements in the natural world that evoke emotion--in this case, the quality after which it is named. This is not merely evident in the work's form, reminiscent of flexed muscles, but by the shifting grade of the bronze composing each ellipse, which seems to expand and contract like a living thing rippling with strength.