Tate Britain’s magnificent Barbara Hepworth retrospective Sculpture for a Modern World ends this weekend. If you haven’t seen it, drop everything and make a beeline for Milbank. You won’t regret it.
Not only does this show explore and celebrate Hepworth’s extraordinarily powerful work but also her position as one of Britain’s greatest artists. A leading figure of the international modern art movement of the 1930s, Hepworth would become recognised internationally as one of the most successful sculptors in the world during the 1950s and 1960s.
Words: Jeremy Miles – Picture: Hattie Miles (Paris 2007)
He was the king of heavy metal – an apparent magician who could imbue sheets of steel and iron girders with a kind of weightless majesty. Sir Anthony Caro, who has died at the aged of 89, was a sculptor who could do amazing things with solidity. A few years ago he produced an astonishing entrance piece to a show at London’s Tate Britain exploring his 50 plus year career. Millbank Steps was a gargantuan piece designed to explore the relationship between sculpture and architecture. Weighing nearly 100 tons, the walk-through work filled more than half of the Tate’s vast Duveen Galleries. The floors had to be reinforced before it was craned in piece by piece.
I’ve long admired the work of the German artist Kurt Schwitters but had not fully realised how shabbily we treated this extraordinarily creative man when he sought wartime refuge in Britain from the Nazis.
This is made abundantly clear in the new exhibition Schwitters in Britain (Tate Britain until May 12) and shows how his pioneering work born out of European Dadism and a profound influence on future artists was largely ignored.