Today saw a trip out to the Hepworth Gallery in Wakefield which in the year it has been open has really established itself as a jewel in the art scene in Yorkshire and no doubt beyond. Having it pretty much on my doorstep has provided a fantastic opportunity to see some really interesting and thought provoking art which changes on a regular basis. I’ve loved the design of the gallery from the first time I saw it floating as it appears to be on the canal.
What I most enjoyed about the new exhibitions today was the installation “Anna” by Heather & Ivan Morison which contained a serious of objects that reflected the life and love affair between “The Warden” and “Anna” and their “The Child” The Warden and Anna were two large pictures and their Child was what looked effectively like an enormous lightshade. Numerous objects scattered the room – pots, flowers, bones that gave a slightly unnerving air to the room that was enhanced through snippets of conversation being played (effectively the paintings talking to each other?). I appreciate that this sounds crackers but hey it worked for me:
I had plenty of time in this room as my kids had got involved in an art project where they were sketching some of the objects in the room that they then transferred onto card and carved out their own etchings. There were several really interesting art activities that children could get involved in that were all linked to the exhibits in the museum. They were well run and allowed the kids to take their time and look at some of the objects in a way that they would never have done if we’d just been walking around. Many other galleries could take a lesson from the approach that the Hepworth take here. The afternoon had them produced their own collographic prints inspired by David Thorpe’s work.
As well as the visiting displays there is also of course the permanent Hepworth sculptures:
So all in all I’ve got high praise for what they are doing at the Hepworth, it’s a high class gallery contained within a beautiful building. The displays are excellent and if you have children there are activities that are well thought through and linked to the art, together with an outdoor play area when you need a bit of a run around. An excellent cafe with locally sourced products and a really good gallery shop and to top it off it’s free. So if you’ve not been get yourself down there and if you enjoy your sculptures and are from outside the area then the Hepworth combined with the Yorkshire Sculpture Park just down the road would make a perfect weekend break.