Omar (Emergent) draws reference to De Rerum Natura, an epic poem written by Lucretius to promote Epicureanism to the Romans, as well as the Rubaiyat, an 11th-century Islamic tome by Omar Khayyam. Khayyam was a champion of the Enlightenment who advocated a humanist interpretation of Islam which included women’s rights and drinking. Omar (Emergent) addresses the contradictory developments of philosophical rationalism in relation to contemporary science. Inspired by an ancient Greek belief in the mystical properties of mathematics, Claydon’s sculpture poses as a ‘dodecahedron’, a totem worshipped by the Pythagoreans; the relic was held to bestow god-like powers of good or evil to its possessor. Mounted on the structure is a ceramic bust representing a transforming entity. This tension between the sacred and profane is mirrored through Claydon’s use of domestic or vulgar materials to create an aesthetic of authority.

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