Fragmented Forms

2000 - present

The Fragmented Forms are vital markers of Lewis's development as an artist and are important precursors of his recent exploration of the interface between human and animal forms. While the first Fragmented Forms were animal in nature, he has since incorporated the fragment metaphor into recent human figure work, and continues to be fascinated by the idea of evoking presence through absence.

Devoid of their most distinctive animal attributes, namely the heads, tails and paws, the fragments are invested with a nascent human physical quality that is particularly visible in those that are vertically positioned. The result is a disturbingly ambiguous anatomical manifestation that begins to blur the boundaries of human and animal as separate and exclusive entities.

The first Fragments date back to 2000 and arose out of a series of drawings of a decapitated leopard carcass done in 1996. Lewis had been struck by the similarity between animal and human anatomy and wished to explore the blurring of animal and human distinctions.
Then idea of evoking presence through literal absence is a theme traceable back to the sculptor's first exposure (in1990) to the huge Egyptian, Greek and Assyrian fragments on view at the British Museum, when he was struck by the evocative power of the broken form.
If the earlier healthy and functioning animal represents aspects that are wild and free, then these Fragmented Forms speak of the consequences of taming and destroying our animal connection to the senses.