Chris Gilmour’s sculptures can be seen as a reflection on consumerism and materialism, or perhaps, a metaphor for transience and impermanence. They can also be taken for what they are: realistic sculptures made entirely out of cardboard. This feat alone makes them remarkable.
Using only glue to assemble his creations, with no supporting structure whatsoever, his sculptures take after man-made objects—anything from a phone and a typewriter to a life-size car.
“One of the reasons I am attracted by cardboard is that, although it can be an expensive material, people fail to notice it and just throw it away when buying an object, often slightly irritated at the thought of having to dispose of it,” writes Gilmour on his website.
He notes that there’s a widespread idea of having to leave our mark, of expressing our personality by buying this or that object that will best convey our originality. “Almost as if the consumer society had transformed even our personalities into something you can buy,” he reflects. His cardboard objects call attention, therefore, to the former products that might have been kept within them—a deflated shell that was reinflated.
“Cardboard is cheap and easy to find, and using simple tools and techniques it is possible to make almost anything,” notes Gilmour. He might be onto something…