Dame Barbara Hepworth
Date of Birth: 10/1/1903
Born in Wakefield, Yorkshire, her father, Herbert Hepworth, would become County Surveyor and an Alderman. She trained at Leeds School of Art and while on a county scholarship at the Royal College of Art she met the painters Raymond Coxon and Edna Ginesi and sculptor Henry Moore. After visiting Rome and Siena with fellow artist, John Skeaping, they were married in Florence on 13 May 1925 and moved to Rome, where both began carving stone. Returning to London, they became leading figures in the "new movement" associated with direct carving alongside Richard Bedford and Henry Moore. Abstraction became the abiding direction of her work, epitomised by the pioneering piercing of the block, which coincided with experiments in collage, photograms and prints. Evacuted to St Ives, Cornwall during the war, she continued to work and her first major solo exhibition was in 1943 at Temple Newsam, Leeds. Hepworth's international eminence was confirmed by the Grand Prix of the 1959 So Paolo Bienal and scholarly interest has focused on her status as one of the few women artists to achieve international prominence. Many of her works can be seen at the Hepworth Gallery and the Yorkshire Sculpture Park in Wakefield.