Icon chevron Back to Exhibitions

Billy Butcher

My work is inspired by my experiences on the many trips to the Brecon Beacon (Bannau Brycheiniog) mountain range that I took whilst growing up. These experiences have shaped who I am as a person. Using steel as my primary medium, I hope to capture the essence of the mountains, and to impart myself onto the pieces just as I have been influenced.

I want my work to reflect the inverse balance I have with the mountain ranges, though not all pieces have an exact balance of parts. I aim to create objects of intrigue with mountainous or rocky features that also have human elements laced throughout. Many of my pieces are formed by giving the stock a suggestion of movement and texture then pinching it under the hydraulic press at various angles. This method produces objects in a way that lets the material move how it wants to, accentuating the natural form I seek.

The first piece is based on Cribyn, a mountain the the Brecon Beacons. Its striking slate protrusions and sheer edges leave a lasting impression solidified each time it’s viewed. It is made from solid steel to help give the feeling that it is something forced into shape by the elements. The second isn’t based directly off the Beacons but rather is a display of two separate forces twisting together in harmony to form something beyond itself. Both pieces are backed onto wood that has been carved and dyed with calligraphy ink for a less striking contrast into the background.

Dissertation – How the Ypres Peace Monument paired with the International Blacksmithing community to create something more than just a monument