Kour Pour “Ozymandias” at Ellis King, Dublin

Mutual Art, October 30, 2014
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“I met a traveller from an antique land
Who said: “Two vast and trunkless legs of stone
Stand in the desert. Near them, on the sand,
Half sunk, a shattered visage lies, whose frown,
And wrinkled lip, and sneer of cold command,
Tell that its sculptor well those passions read
Which yet survive, stamped on these lifeless things,
The hand that mocked them and the heart that fed;
And on the pedestal these words appear:
‘My name is Ozymandias, King of Kings;
Look on my works, ye Mighty, and despair!’
Nothing beside remains. Round the decay
Of that colossal wreck, boundless and bare
The lone and level sands stretch far away.”
 -Percy Bysshe Shelley, Ozymandias, 1817


Pour’s practice is embedded in the interrogation and re-examination of archaic antiquity in the modern information age of digital culture and technology. For “Ozymandias”, Pour has identified and sourced imagery and iconography from various virtual platforms including clip art and vector images, which are thereafter digitally manipulated to form the visceral construct of his compositions.

Contrastingly, ancient methods are steeped in the artist’s practice and modus operandi. For the paintings in “Ozymandias”, Pour utilizes the age-old process of woodblock printing. His woodblocks are hand-carved over several months and thereafter printed on linen where water soluble inks are transferred to the linen substrate through applying pressure with a barren.



In his central floor sculpture entitled, The lone and level sands stretch far way (2014), clay tablets are imprinted from the original woodblock carvings. Thereafter, these tablets are used as a mold to form another counter-point within this perpetual cycle. Here, hot bees wax is poured into the clay mold to form a cast wax relic, which is thereupon casted in aluminum through the modern industrial process of lost-wax casting.

Pour’s employed methodologies in “Ozymandias” is retrospective acknowledgment of some of the earliest forms of mass production and the significance in their function for the dissemination of ideas and the recording of information. From a polarizing contemporary standpoint, Pour accumulates his source material from the Internet and other digital provenance as fundamentally consumerist information age of the present.

Equally, his chosen imagery is drawn from a history and location. In “Ozymandias”, Pour’s works depict an amalgam of iconography derived from Ancient Egyptian, Byzantine, and Oriental heritage to name but a few. Thus the arbitration of time and place comes to a halt. Allegories of time are misplaced and indefinitely repositioned according to the artist’s hand. Within this cyclic framework, Pour opens dialogue towards new narratives and perspectives blending archaic art forms and imagery in a futurist age thus flattening the presence of time and culture for both personal yield and universal inquiry.


At Ellis King, Dublin until 22 November 2014

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