Barbara Hepworth, a British sculptor born in Wakefield, Yorkshire in 1903, was one of the most influential figures in the development of abstract art in Britain. Despite being a female artist during a time when it was difficult for women to gain recognition in the art world, Hepworth went on to become one of the few female artists to achieve critical and commercial success in mid-20th century Britain.
Hepworth attended Leeds School of Art and the Royal College of Art with scholarships, specializing in sculpture. Her sculptures and drawings were inspired by abstract shapes found within nature and the surrounding environment. During World War II, she became a leading figure among artists who lived together as part of an artistic community based mainly in St Ives.
Hepworth’s work exemplified modernism and modern sculpture. She created large-scale bronze sculptures that required significant technical skill to complete successfully. One of her most famous works is “Single Form,” which is now located outside the United Nations Building headquarters after being donated by Hepworth herself.
In addition to her undeniable talent as a sculptor, Hepworth’s legacy also lies within her willingness to push against boundaries – first as a female artist working at a time when art was largely male-dominated industry and later breaking through conventions with her bold pursuit for new forms while developing abstraction. Today, she remains an inspiration for many aspiring artists who are following their own paths towards redefining art as we know it today.
All Barbara Hepworth Artwork on Artchive