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Barbara Hepworth

The Hospital Drawings

Nathaniel Hepburn


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One of England’s best-loved sculptors, Barbara Hepworth (1903–1975) was an important figure in the development of international abstract art. This book explores a two-year period of Hepworth’s life when she created nearly 80 figurative drawings of surgeons at work in hospital operating rooms.
Numerous never-before-seen drawings are featured here alongside images from Hepworth’s only surviving hospital sketchbook. A 1950 lecture in which Hepworth explains the importance of the drawings to her sculptural practice accompanies the illustrations, along with an essay that traces their development and examines the deep and lasting friendship of Hepworth and the surgeons she painted.

Tate Publishing, 9781849761659, 144pp.

Publication Date: September 3, 2013

About the Author

Nathaniel Hepburn is founding curator of Mascalls Gallery, a public art gallery in Kent, England.