10 Things You May Not Know About…Barbara Hepworth


Boundary Lines Between Lovers Oil on Canvas 2015

  • Bach was her hero.
  • She thought of the untouched blocks of marble in her studio yard as similar to a flock of sheep.
  • She cited the sketching of the sunrise from the cockpit of a plane, on a return flight from America, as one of the greatest moments of her life.
  • She was delighted to be made Bard of Cornwall in 1968 and took the Bardic name of Gravyor meaning sculptor.
  • Her Hospital Drawings were undertaken a few years after the hospitalisation of her daughter Sarah for osteomyelitis, an infection of the bones.
  • She was fascinated by the different characteristics of the two hands seeing the right as the “doing” hand and the left as the “sensing” hand. She observed her triplet daughters Sarah and Rachel who were right and left-handed respectively.
  • Rilke was one of her favourite poets, she particularly liked the Sonnets of Orpheus.
  • Figure For Landscape fetched £4.17 million when sold in 2014.
  • As a working artist the relationships she had with her children were complex. She later suffered estrangement from Simon, her second son, and the death of Paul, her first son.
  • Smoking killed her…literally. She died from a fire started by her habit of smoking in bed.

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