While we were in Cornwall in April we visited the Barbara Hepworth Sculpture Garden in St Ives. It is actually the second time that we have visited and I would most certainly go again if I was in St Ives. You can find out more information here.
Although in some ways I am not a fan of "modern art" Hepworth's pieces are something that I love. I cannot explain I am afraid, but they really speak to me. I like the curves and lines of the pieces that she created.
The Garden is tiny and is located in the garden of Hepworth's house and studio. It is well worth a visit.
I hope that you will enjoy this tour around.
When you first go in there is a small exhibition with photographs and some personal and work history. There are also some wooden pieces on display.
This photo shows Hepworth in later years. A woman of great style.
After you go upstairs there is a large open room with many sculptures being displayed. This piece is my favourite. I love the colour of the wood, the contrast between the white area in terms of colour and texture. It reminds me of a nut that some animal has been trying to eat its way through.
This is the back of the piece. Or perhaps it is the front!
In total contrast is this metal and wire - or string? - piece. This is all about the lines that are being created.
Another wooden piece, I liked this, but not as much as the one above.
The day that we visited was really bright and sunny which was wonderful but it made taking photos a bit difficult so sorry about that!
In these photos you can see the studio where Hepworth worked on her sculptures, there are pieces in progress and her tools can also be seen here.
It is so sad that she died before these pieces could be completed. We will never know how she intended them to be.
The reason there are pieces left unfinished is that Hepworth died in a fire at her studio and home in 1975.
All around the garden there are plants and flowers and trees. The leaves of this tree tree - a magnolia? - made the most amazing noise in the wind. It was so loud. I could have stood there all day just listening to it. We had to see the sculptures though!
I did not keep a record of which piece was which, so I cannot tell you more about them. So just enjoy!
Most of the pieces are free form or very flowing, but some as you can see above are very angular.
This is another of the pieces with wires that I find so interesting. Are the holding it together. Is it about the tension? I don't know.
Some years ago when I first had a digital camera I used to take lots of pictures of what I called "textures". This photo of lichen on a tree branch would come into that category. It is fascinating though isn't it.
You can see how beautiful the blue sky was with this cherry blossom just beginning to open. Bliss!
This piece has a shallow depression inside that allows the water to collect inside. Whether this is intentional or not I don't know. I am pretty sure though that Hepworth was not designing bronze bird baths!
As the garden is on different levels there are steps and paths winding up and down. It makes the space feel much larger than it actually is.
This piece looks to me like a woman with her arms wrapped around either herself or someone else.
Many views are created of one piece through another.
As you can see here.
This is the piece that you can see through the one above.
There are both large and small sculptures in the garden. This is one of the smaller ones. What do you think, they look like men heading off somewhere to me!
Several of the pieces are cut away to reveal different textures inside or further cut outs.
Others wind and twist around themselves.
Or are just angular shapes.
Or a series of angular shapes.
You can see one of the pieces that has another section hidden inside it. As though it is being held safely by arms wrapped around it.
In days gone by this shot and the one below would have been returned from being developed with a sticker on it saying "overexposed" but now we can take as many pictures as we like and we appreciate this different look and the bokeh that appear in our shots!
Just occasionally you can glimpse views out of the garden and you can just see the sea in this one!
As well as looking straight on at the obvious views of each piece I like to look at the backs and sides. They look the same but so different at the same time.
In the middle of the garden there is a pool with this little bridge over it. It isn't really suitable for walking over thought!
You can see just how tiny the home and gallery is.
We took a last look around.
Remembering to photograph the blocks of stone that were all stood waiting to be worked by a sculptress who was not going to come to deal with them. They almost seemed like a sculpture in themselves.
I love this garden and would as I said above go again. It has also inspired me to look out for more Hepworth sculptures and to see more of her work if and when the opportunity arises.
I hope that you enjoyed seeing it as well. Sorry for the high number of photos - so much to share!