Fighting through the jungle, the explorers come across an empty plain beyond which is a simple grey temple with a door. There is nothing to hint at what is inside, or whether the temple can be entered through the door or whether it will be locked tightly shut.
Quietly, slowly, the explorers move across the empty barren space towards the doorway and, much to their surprise, when they push, the door opens to allow them inside into a clean modern environment, where regimented lighting strips guide the explorers to the inner sanctum.
As they enter, large statues both stand in their way and guide them to other spaces. They have entered a labyrinth of 15 chambers where god-like statues stand guard over the central space which, in contrast to tombs in South America or China, is full of 500 figures lying in all sorts of postures, celebrating life not death.
The jungle in Bermondsey in South London and Antony Gormley has created a new labyrinth at the White Cube Gallery. At the heart, the Sleeping Field (2015-6) fills the central space with 517 cast-iron figures in a variety of relaxed.postures, all contemporary, as if on a seaside beach, while around it in the other chambers are works from the late 1980’s until 2016, standing guard like sentinels around the central space. Concrete blocks, steel and iron shapes all recreate the human form from the dimensions of Gormley’s own body, including “Passage” a tunnel formed with Gormley’s silhouette .through which the visitor can pass.
An exhibition which not only shows Gormley’s newest works, along with some of his older ones, but which does so in a setting which recreates the atmosphere of those mysterious other environments, in the modern art gallery setting that characterises the White Cube.