SOUTERRAIN

Oh build your ship of death. Oh build it!
for you will need it.
For the voyage of oblivion awaits you.
D.H. Lawrence

Rosie Leventon's sculptures on the theme of the Sutton Hoo buriaI ship have the effect of taking the subject out of the field of archaeology and into the realm of signs. An artist's obsession with a particular subject always proposes that we enter into a new relationship with it, and offers a new perception of its range of possible meanings for us. In this case, what is historically and culturally fixed - the ship had particular purposes in a particular time, and together with its cargo of accoutrements and objects, was a means to an end, fitted out for service, instrumental, utile - has been transformed by an act of the creative imagination into a symbol of things that transcend their specific siting in place and time. The critical question is - what significances does Leventon's work discover in the ship found underground?