Displaying a selection of Jacob Epstein’s preparatory drawings for the W.H. Hudson Memorial (1925), Hyde Park, London, this exhibition provides a rare opportunity to explore Epstein’s creative imagination, as well as delving into the extreme controversy that surrounded his work.
In 1922, Epstein was asked to create a memorial sculpture for the popular writer W.H. Hudson. His designs are recorded in a unique sketchbook which is kept in the Henry Moore Institute Archive in Leeds. Described as a frenzied out pouring of ideas, the sketchbook is unparalleled in Epstein’s career. It was circulated amongst the Memorial Committee in 1923, but has remained virtually unknown to a wider public.
The final sculpture is undoubtedly Epstein’s most controversial work. Though it appears inoffensive to twenty-first century eyes, the relief panel was subject to intensely heated and bitter debate, the likes of which the art-world had never before seen (and is unlikely to witness again).
Staurday 26 May, 2pm
Curator Elin Morgan talks about Epstein's Rima: the design process and controversy it caused.
Image credit: Jacob Epstein, Sketch of Rima (1923), Leeds Museums and Galleries (Leeds Art Gallery)