Hepworth Vertical Forms to be re-sited

An upcoming project between in conjunction with the University of Hertfordshire will see the de-installation, conservation and re-siting of the University of Hertfordshire’s Barbara Hepworth sculpture Vertical Forms. 

The relief sculpture Vertical Forms by Barbara Hepworth is located on the façade of the Main Building, College Lane campus. It was commissioned for the opening of Hatfield Technical College in 1952 and was built into the fabric of the building. The sculpture is of great significance as one of very few public commissions that Barbara Hepworth undertook during this period. It was created during the five years 1948 to 1953 when the artist put aside landscape to concentrate on the figure.

A case for relocating the sculpture inside

Vertical Forms has been in situ for over 65 years and the sculpture’s exposure to the elements has had a significant impact on its condition. The original smooth surface has been lost, as has the definition of the forms depicted. The sculpture will only continue to deteriorate if left in the current location, and ultimately the image lost. 

VERTICAL FORMS  by Barbara Hepworth. © in the work owned by the artist. Photo credit University of Hertfordshire.

VERTICAL FORMS by Barbara Hepworth.
© in the work owned by the artist. Photo credit University of Hertfordshire.

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