October 9, 2013


Alison Wilding. Photograph: Linda Nylind for the Guardian
Standing well apart from the glitz of the fashionable art scene, Alison Wilding is deservedly becoming recognised as one of the most significant and authentic twentieth-century British sculptors. Her answers to one of those usually superficial mini-interviews in today’s Guardian are characteristically terse and to the point. A brief selection:

Who or what have you sacrificed for your art?
Absolutely nothing.

Do you believe in the adage that art is 1% inspiration and 99% perspiration?
No. Art is different things at different times. Sometimes it's tedious hard work, sometimes it's very fast; sometimes it's something you make yourself, and sometimes it's fabricated by someone else. I don't think there are any hard and fast rules.

Why do public sculptures often attract such controversy?
Because most of them are rubbish. You only have to look around you to see there's too much stuff that's no good. Everyone wants to make a little keynote work for a particular building, but it's just not necessary.

What's the greatest threat to art?
Popularity. I'm an unashamed elitist. That's unfashionable: everyone wants bums on seats, and more and more people to go to galleries and museums, so the money goes to something that's very popular, or destined to be. I really don't agree with that.