The sculptural object has spent much of the recent past being made to disappear from view.
The word 'sculpture' might still carry connotations of weight, scale and material, yet none of these things may necessarily be present in any particular work. Whether lost into a void, left behind in an 'expanded field' or exploded to occupy the architectural space that once simply contained it, the sculptural object as the flotsam of an artist's engagement with process and materials, seems to have been in a continual state of crisis since first becoming detached from its plinth. As for the sculptor, the artist as maker, they can often be seen performing as magician, orchestrating events and actions which culminate in the object of our desire, the decorative assistant, simply vanishing from the stage. With essays exploring the nature and function of the sculptural object by Martin Herbert, profiles of past winners of the award by Fiona MacDonald and a history of the object as explored through the various discourses developed at St Martins School of Art from the mid-1960s by Matilda Strang, Thinking is Making questions both the presence and absence of the object and its maker within contemporary British sculpture.