William Pye Water Scupture


This sculpture inspired by the work of Hokusai, the Japanese master wood engraver, pays heed to the immense power of nature as manifested in great waves on the sea. People are free to interpret my work in any way they wish, be it as a wake-up call to implement sea defenses or as a memorial to those who have suffered at the hands of the sea. Personally, I was driven by the sheer beauty of wave forms and the challenge of capturing this in bronze.

The beginnings of this project can be traced many years ago to a moment when I became fascinated by massive waves crashing on the Long Island shore, while staying with friends in Bridgehampton. I thought about how the fleeting life of these impressive forms might be captured sculpturally. When I was invited to participate in an exhibition with the brief to produce something that paid homage to another artist, my choice of Hokusai was an easy one. It resulted in a series of small bronzes inspired by a number of Hokusai images.

The opportunity afforded by the Holland Park exhibition "Bronze 2000" to make a lifesize wave proved irresistible. As bronze was the theme of the exhibition, I wanted my contribution to express those qualities of the material that are peculiar to the casting process. Bronze has the potential to be infinitely more expressive than other sculptural processes such as steel fabrication and carving.

  • Exhibition at Goodwood race course in 2005
  • Exhibition at Goodwood race course in 2005
  • In Holland Park, London, in 2000
  • On exhibition in Holland Park in 2000