Large Blade Venus is the biggest sculpture in the Blade Venus series; balanced on its sharpest point, it exhibits a poised stillness.

Its imposingly elegant form derives from Japanese Samurai swords and Chinese chopping knives, but also recalls natural objects such as leaves, as well as archaic figures of Venus. By paring the sculpture down to essentials, Turnbull avoids the restriction of a single interpretation, echoing the deliberate ambiguity of Zen paintings. Left open to external changes of context and presentation and to the imagination of the viewer, Large Blade Venus is representative of Turnbull's idea of sculpture as both completed product and ongoing process. It was purchased and presented to the Fitzwilliam Museum in honour of Sir Nicholas Goodison, The Art Fund's Chairman from 1986 to 2002, who has been a longstanding admirer of Turnbull's work.


The artist.

Fitzwilliam Museum

Trumpington Street, Cambridge, Cambridgeshire, CB2 1RB
01223 332900

Opening times

Tue – Sat, 10am – 5pm

Sun & Bank Holidays, 12noon – 5pm

Closed Mon, 24 – 26, 31 Dec and 1 Jan

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