Art Review: Carving in Britain @ Fine Art Society

Think of British sculpture over the last 100 years and thoughts naturally turn to Henry Moore and Barbara Hepworth. But these are just the two most famous names among many. This exhibition at the Fine Art Society attempts to show visitors their varied styles and results. There are 86 works on display across the gallery’s three floors, ranging from classical to abstract.

Inspiration comes from varying eras. McWilliam’s Hollow Figure owes a debt to Cycladic art, while the clean lines of Ursula Edgcumbe’s bird bring to mind Egyptian sculptures weathered by the sand into simpler forms.

Plenty of contemporary works are also on display. John Skeaping’s Crucifix dominates the back wall. The spindly yet powerful figure is reminiscent of work by Louise Bourgeois. This sculpture leads visitors downstairs to more modern works, where Julian Wild’s gleaming scarlet tree appears to be covered in blood as if it has just burst forth violently from the ground. We also enjoyed Andreas Blank’s humorous monument to the office worker with a neatly folded shirt and tie made of marble.

This is an impressive collection of British sculpture and akin to an exhibition we’d expect from a larger museum.

Carving in Britain: From 1910 to Now is on display at The Fine Art Society, 148 New Bond St, W1S 2JT until 12 January. Entrance is free.

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