Thomas Schütte, ‘Them and Us (X)’, 1995, Phillips

Property Subject to the Artist's Resale Right (see Conditions of Sale for further information)

Plastic structure 79.8 x 149.6 x 85.4 cm (31 3/8 x 58 7/8 x 33 5/8 in.)
Overall dimensions variable

From the Catalogue:
The present work, a collaborative scene from Richard Deacon and Thomas Schütte’s Them and Us exhibition at Lisson Gallery in 1995, transports the viewer into the fantastical and dramatic realm of Deacon and Schütte’s artistic self-reflection. Whilst planning the show, the duo became engaged in extensive discourse concerning 'scale, monuments, man and animal, man and man, man and light, space and colour and so on…' (Thomas Schütte, quoted in Matthias Winzen, ed., Siemens Kulturprogramm, Ostfildern, 1997, p. 111). Twelve mythical scenes emerged from the artists’ imagination with Schütte’s rudimentary and mysterious spirits interacting with Deacon’s animal hair sculptures. Investigating the connection between man and his surroundings, each of Schütte’s seemingly emotionless yet active figurines is left deliberately paired with Deacon’s tactile sculptures. Both figures, each with undeveloped physiognomy and spherical form, reveal themselves as the intricate workings of the artist’s hand. Explicitly forging boundaries through the divisive title Them and Us, the artists bring the perception of the relationship to the fore with the figures always relating 'to their surroundings, to the space, to the viewer, to each other' (Thomas Schütte, quoted in Matthias Winzen, ed., Siemens Kulturprogramm, Ostfildern, 1997, p. 111). Them and Us (X) studies the relationship between individuals and objects whilst simultaneously revealing the workings of Deacon and Schütte’s artistic introspection.
Courtesy of Phillips

London, Lisson Gallery, Thomas Schütte and Richard Deacon. Them and Us, May - July 1995

Martin Kreyssig, Them and Us: Richard Deacon, Thomas Schütte, 1995, video (3.58 - 4.35 mins)

Lisson Gallery, London
Christie's, London, 8 December 1999, lot 34
Private Collection
Sotheby's, London, 13 February 2013, lot 343
Acquired at the above sale by the present owner

About Thomas Schütte

Since the late 1970s—when he studied with renowned German artist Gerhard Richter—Thomas Schütte has been subverting traditional art historical genres through his eclectic output of sculptures, prints, installations, drawings, watercolors, and photographs. Schütte makes familiar forms of expression, like memorial portraiture and figurative sculpture, strange through evocative, often disturbing alterations, such as in his treatment of the female nude in his “Bronzefrauen” series (Bronze Women, 1999-ongoing) where figurative shapes morph into abstract or mutant forms, or his “Alte Freunde” series, in which the subjects’ despondent expressions highlight the vulnerability of the individual against the cruelty and complexity of the vast world. Through his work he explores the human condition, offering a critical perspective on social, cultural, and political issues and visually eloquent commentary on memory, loss, and the difficulty of memorializing the past.

German, b. 1954, Oldenburg, Germany, based in Düsseldorf, Germany

About Richard Deacon

Using ceramics, stainless steel, and wood, 1987 Turner Prize winner Richard Deacon makes monumental sculptures that explore the nature of opposites. Deacon questions essential yet contradictory characteristics: rigidity and strength, the organic and the geometric, grace and awkwardness. “What seems to me particularly interesting in the rolling, twisting, bending operations with material [is] that the enclosure or volume created [has] nothing to do with weight or mass,” Deacon explains. “It is empty and therefore connected to meaning in a way that is independent of causality or rationality (that is to say that the outside is not caused by the inside).” Considered one of the most important living British artists, in 1999 Deacon was named a Commander of the British Empire by Queen Elizabeth II.

British, b. 1949, Bangor, United Kingdom, based in London, United Kingdom

Solo Shows

Richard Deacon: New Sculpture
Beaux-Arts de Paris, 
Paris, France,
Foundation studies
Richard Deacon. Drawings and Prints 1968 – 2016

Group Shows

Museum of Modern Art, 
New York, NY, USA,
An International Survey of Recent Painting and Scultpure
The Tate Gallery, 
London, UK,
New Art at the Tate Gallery
View Artist's CV