intake photographed 4/20/2021
intake photographed 4/20/2021
intake photographed 4/20/2021
intake photographed 4/20/2021
intake photographed 4/20/2021

Daedalus/Icarus Matrix II


Artist
Michael Ayrton (British, 1921 – 1975)
Date
1968
Medium
Bronze
Dimensions
Work : 16 3/4 x 9 x 10 1/2 in. (42.55 x 22.86 x 26.67 cm)
Credit Line
Hope College Collection, purchased with funds donated by Jacob E. and Leona M. Nyenhuis
Object Number
2021.1

Label
Daedalus appears in Greek mythology as an inventive and highly skilled artisan who designed the Labyrinth in which King Minos imprisoned the Minotaur, and who later created wings from feathers and wax that he and his son Icarus used to escape the island of Crete after the Minotaur’s death. British artist Michael Ayrton identified strongly with Daedalus and explored and expanded upon the original mythical figure in two novels and dozens of paintings, drawings, and sculptures over a span of fifteen years between the late 1950s and early 1970s. This 1968 sculpture depicts Icarus testing the wax-and-feather wings invented by his father while Daedalus works below him on construction of the Labyrinth. The sculpture is a study for a larger 8-foot high version that stands within the Arkville Maze in upstate New York. Ayrton explained the sculpture in a note to Armand Erpf, the patron who commissioned the Arkville Maze: “Daedalus and Icarus are bound by a further dimension of aspiration, one aspect of which is shown in the making of the maze, the other in the desire to fly upwards to escape it.”

Object Type
Sculpture