Dame Barbara Hepworth's Towering Sea Form

London | 6 June 2024

Towering at more than two metres tall, Sea Form (Atlantic) belongs to a spectacular series of large-scale bronzes which Barbara Hepworth produced in the late 1950s and 60s. She sought to invoke a powerful sense of the blending of human figure and landscape through a unified form to be on display in the open air. Other casts of the present work are held in the Museum of Fine Arts, Dallas, the City of Norwich Museums and the Lynden Sculpture Garden.

Hepworth drew inspiration from the Cornish landscape and created sculptures such as Sea Form (Atlantic) that directly engage with the environment in which they are set. The basic form of the present work, a slightly unbalanced 'shield', derives in part from the Neolithic standing stones at the Chun Castle hill fort site in West Cornwall, and the ovoid piercings relate to the caves found along the Cornish coastline.

This stunning monolith is the star lot of the Modern British and Irish Art Evening Auction taking place at Sotheby's London on 6 June.

Stories & Video

Stay informed with Sotheby’s top stories, videos, events & news.

Receive the best from Sotheby’s delivered to your inbox.

By subscribing you are agreeing to Sotheby’s Privacy Policy. You can unsubscribe from Sotheby’s emails at any time by clicking the “Manage your Subscriptions” link in any of your emails.