The Hepworth Wakefield

The Hepworth Wakefield, designed by David Chipperfield

The Hepworth Wakefield, Yorkshire's major new art gallery opening in May 2011.

Designed by award-winning architect David Chipperfield, The Hepworth Wakefield will show a previously unseen collection of sculpture by Wakefield-born Barbara Hepworth, along with a nationally important collection of historical and modern art. As the third largest contemporary exhibition space outside London, The Hepworth Wakefield will bring the work of leading UK and international artists to Yorkshire through a changing programme of temporary exhibitions.

Venue Type:


Opening hours

Tuesday - Wednesday 10am - 5pm
Bank Holiday and school holiday Mondays 10am - 5pm.

Admission charges


The nationally important art collection previously housed at Wakefield Art Gallery will soon transfer to new, purpose-built gallery The Hepworth Wakefield. The collection features major works by locally-born sculptors Barbara Hepworth and Henry Moore and many other leading British artists. It also includes the unique Gott collection of over 1,200 artists' views of Yorkshire, which will be shown publicly for the first time.

Collection details

Fine Art, Decorative and Applied Art, Architecture

Key artists and exhibits

  • Barbara Hepworth
  • Henry Moore
  • James Tissot
  • LS Lowry
  • Roger Fry
  • Duncan Grant
  • Ben Nicholson
  • Anthony Caro
  • Walter Sickert
  • Paul Nash
  • Jacob Epstein
  • Ivon Hitchens
  • Graham Sutherland
  • David Bomberg
  • David Hockney
  • John Piper
  • Philip Reinagle
  • Reclining Figure 1936
  • Mother and Child 1934
  • On the Thames 1849
  • British modernism
  • British art
Exhibition details are listed below, you may need to scroll down to see them all.
photograph of Hepworth family gift gallery

The Hepworth Family Gift/Hepworth at Work

  • 1 November 2013 — 1 November 2018 *on now

The Hepworth Family Gift consists of 44 full size, rarely seen working models - surviving prototypes in plaster and aluminium made in preparation for the works in bronze Hepworth executed from the mid-1950s to the end of her career. It also includes drawings and a large group of lithographs and screen prints by Barbara Hepworth, and has been given to The Hepworth Wakefield, via the Art Fund, by the artist’s daughters Rachel Kidd and Sarah Bowness, through the Trustees of the Barbara Hepworth Estate.

The Hepworth at Work display explores Hepworth’s studio environment, her work in plaster, her collaborative relationships with bronze foundries and the monumental commissions she received in the last fifteen years of her life. The tools and materials on display were Hepworth’s own and have been drawn from her second studio in St Ives, the Palais de Danse. Also featured is a step-by-step reconstruction of the bronze-casting process, photographs of works in progress and four specially commissioned films containing archival footage of the artist in her studio.


Bernard Meadows, 'Malloy plate IV', c.1966

Sculpting the Line: British Sculptors as Printmakers

  • 14 October 2014 — 6 September 2015 *on now

Throughout the 20th century sculptors have been drawn to the medium of print, often using printmaking processes to work on ideas which would eventually translate into sculpture, and to further refine and expand upon the forms and ideas that drive their sculptural work. While the 3-dimensional nature of sculpture may seem to be at odds with the 2-dimensional surface of print, in reality, they share much in common with each other. Print-making can essentially be described as a drawing process in 3 dimensions; whether the printmaker is incising lines into a metal plate to make an engraving or gouging out a design in wood to produce a woodcut print, these very hands-on and physical processes inextricably link the maker and the material.

Suitable for

  • Any age
photograph of culpture by Lynda Benglis

Lynda Benglis

  • 6 February — 5 July 2015 *on now

The Hepworth Wakefield presents the UK’s first museum survey of work by Greek-American artist and feminist icon Lynda Benglis. This highly anticipated exhibition is the largest presentation of Benglis’ work in the UK, featuring approximately 50 works that span the entirety of her prolific career to date.

Aged 73, Benglis is one of America’s most significant living artists. Born in 1941 in Louisiana, USA, she was heralded as the ‘heir to Pollock’ by Life magazine in 1970, and emerged as part of a generation of artists forging new approaches to sculpture and painting in the wake of Abstract Expressionism, Minimalism and Pop Art.

Suitable for

  • Family friendly


A Greater Freedom: Hepworth 1965-1975

  • 25 April 2015 — 1 April 2016 *on now

A Greater Freedom follows the artistic developments seen in Barbara Hepworth’s later years, focusing on the last decade of her life from 1965 – 1975.

Hepworth was extremely prolific during her later years: former Tate Director Sir Alan Bowness, Hepworth’s son-in-law and biographer, noted that nearly as many works were made during the 1960s as between 1925 and 1960. By this point, Hepworth had achieved international recognition, having represented Britain at the Venice Biennale in 1952, winning the Grand Prix at the Sao Paulo Biennial of 1959, and having had Single Form commissioned for the United Nations Building, New York, in the early 1960s.

This display looks at the new ideas and processes that these successes afforded her opportunity to explore.

Plasters: Casts and Copies

  • 25 April 2015 — 1 April 2016 *on now

Taking the permanent display of Barbara Hepworth’s 44 plasters and prototypes as
a starting point, The Hepworth Wakefield presents an exhibition re-examining this often overlooked medium.

The display explores the shifting status of plaster: from its use in 18th-19th century teaching casts of classical sculpture, to its perception as a modern material prized for its ready availability, through to contemporary artists’ responses to the material. In addition to works from the Wakefield Art Collection, key loans from the Royal Academy and the Victoria and Albert Museum are on display, showcasing the use of plaster by Hepworth and her contemporaries including Jean Arp, Ben Nicholson and Kurt Schwitters.

Suitable for

  • Family friendly

Hepworth in Yorkshire

  • 23 May — 6 September 2015 *on now

This display explores Barbara Hepworth’s early years in Wakefield and the ongoing inspiration of the Yorkshire landscape in her artistic development.

The display features archival material and work relating to her family and childhood, accompanied by early drawings, paintings and sculptures. Photographic images of Yorkshire commissioned by Hepworth are also included, reflecting her assertions that the experience of growing up in this area was hugely influential.

For the first time, The Hepworth Wakefield will display a newly-acquired portrait of Hepworth, painted by Dame Ethel Walker, R.A, when Hepworth was 18 years old.

Suitable for

  • Family friendly

Magali Reus

  • 17 July — 27 September 2015

Dutch artist Magali Reus will create a new body of work to be exhibited at The Hepworth Wakefield’s new 600sqm space The Calder. This is Reus’ first UK institutional exhibition, following recent presentations at the Kestnergesellschaft in Hannover and Fridericianum in Kassel.

In recent works Reus has used recognisable everyday objects as frameworks for exploring the languages of material and colour. Reus marries these forms with art historical references, to the industrial seriality of Minimalism and the modernist ‘assemblage’.

In this new series of works, Reus focuses on the curb as an architectural motif, using elements such as manhole covers, pavement cracks and graffiti as starting points for new sculptural forms. Reus’ emerging practice focuses on material form and presence, offering an exciting new take on these key tenets of sculpture.

Opening alongside the major collaborative Anthony Caro exhibitions at The Hepworth Wakefield and Yorkshire Sculpture Park, Reus’ exhibition provides a dialogue with the eminent British sculptor’s work, which has been hugely inspirational to her practice.

Suitable for

  • Family friendly

Anthony Caro

  • 17 July — 1 November 2015

Anthony Caro is long recognized internationally as one of Britain’s most significant sculptors. This summer as part of a Yorkshire Sculpture Triangle initiative, visitors have the unique opportunity to experience Caro’s work in the indoor and outdoor settings of the David Chipperfield-designed galleries of The Hepworth Wakefield and the landscape of the Yorkshire Sculpture Park.

The Hepworth Wakefield’s exhibition contextualises the artist’s work, beginning with the era in which he emerged alongside the then dominant figures of Barbara Hepworth and Henry Moore, shocking the art world with vividly coloured steel constructions. It will offer a unique opportunity to discover and celebrate one of the world’s great sculptors in Yorkshire, including the UK premier of a number of Caro’s Last Sculptures.

Suitable for

  • Family friendly

Des Hughes

  • 12 September 2015 — 1 March 2016

Working with The Hepworth Wakefield archives, Des Hughes uncovers the journey of Henry Moore’s Reclining Figure after it was removed from its public installation outside the civic centre in Castleford, a close neighbour of Wakefield, following fears that the sculpture would be stolen.

Combining narratives of British Modernism, histories of public sculpture, and the engagement of local audiences with contemporary art, Hughes will be creating a new pair of public sculptures, to be situated outside Castleford Academy and The Hepworth Wakefield respectively.

The unveiling of the sculptures is accompanied by an exhibition of Hughes’ research and creative processes, and an intervention by Hughes into the Hepworth Wakefield Art Collection.

Suitable for

  • Family friendly

Enrico David

  • 13 November 2015 — 14 February 2016

Enrico David works across a wide range of media including painting, sculpture, textiles and installation yet his work is nearly always rooted in the immediacy of drawing. Using craft techniques such as embroidery and tapestry, alongside installations that nod towards the field of interior design, David works often assert a gendered or sexualized dimension, paired with an exploration of psychological states that have often led him to be characterized as a ‘contemporary surrealist’.

The exhibition brings together newly-commissioned work, conceived for the gallery spaces at The Hepworth Wakefield. The exhibition has been programmed alongside the Gertrude Hermes exhibition, drawing out the critical dialogue between drawing and sculpture that runs throughout both artists’ work.

Suitable for

  • Family friendly

Gertrude Hermes

  • 13 November 2015 — 14 February 2016

Gertrude Hermes (1901 -1983) was one of the most highly acclaimed British print-makers of her generation. However, while her exquisite wood engravings won her awards, titles and recognition, her first love was sculpture, much of which has remained unseen by a wider public.

This retrospective, the first British survey of sculptures, prints, preparatory drawings, sketchbooks and private press books in 30 years, addresses this imbalance. The display offers a compelling insight into Hermes’ audacious draughtsmanship and its relationship to her sculpture, bringing to light her networks of creativity, influence and friendship that included the writers Frieda Lawrence and P.L. Travers and the artists Henry Moore and Leon Underwood.

Suitable for

  • Family friendly
Events details are listed below. You may need to scroll down or click on headers to see them all. For events that don't have a specific date see the 'Resources' tab above.

Creative Carving

  • 5 July 2015 11am-4pm

Be inspired by artists Barbara Hepworth and Henry Moore and explore sculpting techniques with your family.

There will be the following range of different materials and processes available to suit little ones of different ages:

Soft dough modelling (children 3-4 years old)

Newplast modelling material (children 4-5 years old)

Soap carving (children 6- 10 years old)

Clay carving (young people 11+)

Please note you will be asked to collect an activity sheet from the learning studios and go up to the gallery before starting the activity. Last admittance to the activity will be at 3.30pm. This workshop will be closed over lunch from 12.30 – 1pm. Children must be accompanied by an adult.

Suitable for


Code Club

  • 13 June — 18 July 2015 *on now

Join our new Code Club and make video games and websites using code.

In addition to learning coding skills, children will develop skills in collaboration, planning, problem solving and designing - but most of all they'll have fun doing it!

The club is for children aged 9 - 11 years and will take place from 10.30 - 11.30am on each of the dates.

Course 1 (6 weeks) - Sat 18 & 25 April, 2, 9, 16 & 23 May
Course 2 (6 weeks) - Sat 13, 20 & 27 June, 4, 11 & 18 July

Suitable for


Code Club is free but has a limited capacity. Please book a place in advance by contacting 01924 247398 or


Felt Making

  • 12 July 2015 11am-4pm

Produce your own colourful felted fabrics inspired by the collection displays in this family workshop.

Gain inspiration by exploring the galleries as a family and make colour and line drawings. Art explorers young and old can work together to transfer their drawings into designs using merino fleece in our learning studios.

Using natural and dyed merino wool, rolling mats and everyday materials like soap and towels, families will be introduced to the process of felt making. Have a go at everything from manipulating the dry fleece, to felting your work into a fused piece of fabric artwork ready to take home.

Making felt can be tiring on arms and wrists, but you can take your time and we are here to help. If you have weaker wrists then please let us know and we will make sure you get help at this stage. We use a very watered down soap solution, so let us know if you have a sensitivity to this.

This family workshop is developed and facilitated by artist Karen Logan, one of our Creative Practitioner Team.

This workshop is suitable for children aged 3-12 and children must be accompanied by an adult.

Please note you will be asked to collect an activity sheet from the Learning Studios and go up to the gallery before starting the activity, and last admittance to the activity will be at 3.30pm. This workshop will be closed over lunch from 12.30 – 1pm.

Suitable for


Sculpture Course: Breaking the Mould

  • 13 June — 4 July 2015 *on now

Experiment with different sculpting techniques including maquette building with wire and plaster, casting, and clay sculpting during this 4 week course. No previous experience necessary.

The course will take inspiration from the Plasters: Cast and Copies exhibition (opening May 2015), and will look at Barbara Hepworth’s practice and focus upon the themes of colour and form as well as exploring techniques and processes used by Hepworth and other artists within the exhibition.

Participants will experiment with sculptural materials to create a maquette form through modelling with wire and plaster. Participants will then explore casting and reductive carving techniques before choosing which method to use to create a final piece to take home at the end of the course. Each workshop will also look at different ways of adding colour to the sculptures including adding pigments during different stages of the sculpting process and glazing with inks.

Sculpting sessions can be very messy so please wear appropriate clothing. Aprons will be supplied.

Runs on Saurdays: 13 June 2015, 20 June 2015, 27 June 2015, 04 July 2015

Suitable for




The Hepworth Wakefield
Gallery Walk
West Yorkshire


For information about The Hepworth Wakefield, please visit



The Hepworth Wakefield

01924 247360

All information is drawn from or provided by the venues themselves and every effort is made to ensure it is correct. Please remember to double check opening hours with the venue concerned before making a special visit.