Back

BARBARA HEPWORTH (1903-1975)

 
BARBARA HEPWORTH - Five Forms with Three Circles - white marble - 9 1/2 x 4 1/4 x 5 1/2 in. BARBARA HEPWORTH - Five Forms with Three Circles - white marble - 9 1/2 x 4 1/4 x 5 1/2 in. BARBARA HEPWORTH - Five Forms with Three Circles - white marble - 9 1/2 x 4 1/4 x 5 1/2 in. BARBARA HEPWORTH - Five Forms with Three Circles - white marble - 9 1/2 x 4 1/4 x 5 1/2 in. BARBARA HEPWORTH - Five Forms with Three Circles - white marble - 9 1/2 x 4 1/4 x 5 1/2 in. BARBARA HEPWORTH - Five Forms with Three Circles - white marble - 9 1/2 x 4 1/4 x 5 1/2 in. BARBARA HEPWORTH - Five Forms with Three Circles - white marble - 9 1/2 x 4 1/4 x 5 1/2 in. BARBARA HEPWORTH - Five Forms with Three Circles - white marble - 9 1/2 x 4 1/4 x 5 1/2 in. BARBARA HEPWORTH - Five Forms with Three Circles - white marble - 9 1/2 x 4 1/4 x 5 1/2 in. BARBARA HEPWORTH - Five Forms with Three Circles - white marble - 9 1/2 x 4 1/4 x 5 1/2 in.
Five Forms with Three Circles19669 1/2 x 4 1/4 x 5 1/2 in.(24.13 x 10.8 x 13.97 cm) white marble
Provenance
Mrs. J. Levin, New  York (by 1971)
The Pace Gallery, New York
The Collection of Morton and Barbara Mandel, April 1994
Sale: Christie’s Post-War and Contemporary Art Day Sale, Featuring the Collection of Morton and Barbara Mandel, 2 Dec 2020, Lot 105
Private Collection, California
Literature
A. Bowness, ed., The Complete Sculpture of Barbara Hepworth, 1960-1969, London, 1971, p. 42, no. 423 (illustrated, pl. 143)
Inquire

“The sculptor must search with passionate intensity for the underlying principle of the organization of mass and tension – the meaning of gesture and the structure of rhythm.” – Barbara Hepworth

History

Barbara Hepworth created some of the best-loved public sculpture in Britain and beyond. But after almost a decade of commitment to modeling and casting for large-scale public installations, she began to devote attention to her first love: a direct engagement with the material at hand and the physicality of chiseling, carving and shaping that more appropriately served her credo of ‘truth to materials.’  By 1966, when she carved the intimate Five Forms and Three Circles in white marble, she had begun to play with more rectilinear geometries, inviting circular shapes to be integrated with angular ones. The period is often viewed as Hepworth’s return to her earlier years when in a moment of sheer brilliance, she pierced a hole in a small carving sensing it would give the figure a sense of flow and to lead the viewer’s eye around it. “When I first pierced a shape,” she recalled later, “I thought it was a miracle. A new vision was opened.” The year was 1931 and it was as much a revelation for the artist as a revolution for modern sculpture. 

More
  • Hepworth38164_history1
    Squares with Two Circles, 1963, Plaster for Bronze
  • Hepworth38164_history2
    Dame Barbara Hepworth in her Treywin Studio, 1961
  • Hepworth38164_history3
    Four Square (Walk Through) 1966, Barbara Hepworth Museum and Sculpture Garden, St Ives
  • Hepworth38164_history4
    Four Square (Walk Through) 1966 Tate Gallery, London
“It is easy now to communicate with people through abstraction, and particularly so in sculpture. Since the whole body reacts to its presence, people become themselves a living part of the whole.” – Barbara Hepworth

MARKET INSIGHTS

  • Hepworth38164_graph
  • The record price for a Barbara Hepworth sculpture at auction was set in 2014 when Figure for Landscape (1959-60) sold for 4,170,500 GBP Premium ($7,083,237 USD)
  • The graph prepared by Art Market Research shows that since 1976, works by Gottlieb have increased at a 9.3% annual rate of return
  • The earlier sale for Five Forms with Three Circles in December 2020 took place during a slump in the artist’s market. Considering this work’s most similar comp, Three squares and circles (1966), which achieved nearly $1 million seven years prior, it would seem this work has significant upside potential 
  • Hepworth produced many editions, but Five Forms with Three Circles is a unique work, which adds greatly to its value

Top Results at Auction

“Figure for Landscape” (1959-60), cast 6 of 7, bronze with a green/brown patina, height 102 3/8 in. Sold at Christie’s London: June 24, 2014 for 4,170,500 GBP Premium ($7,083,237 USD).
“Figure for Landscape” (1959-60), cast 6 of 7, bronze with a green/brown patina, height 102 3/8 in. Sold at Christie’s London: June 24, 2014 for 4,170,500 GBP Premium ($7,083,237 USD).
“Two Forms with White (Greek)” (conceived 1963 and cast in bronze in 1969), bronze with a dark brown and white-painted patina, height 39 3/8 in. including base. Sold at Christie’s London: June 24, 2015 for 3,106,500 GBP Premium (4,870,992 USD).
“Two Forms with White (Greek)” (conceived 1963 and cast in bronze in 1969), bronze with a dark brown and white-painted patina, height 39 3/8 in. including base. Sold at Christie’s London: June 24, 2015 for 3,106,500 GBP Premium (4,870,992 USD).
“Quiet Form” (1973), white Seravezza marble, height 16.9 in. Sold at Sotheby’s London: Monday, June 13, 2016 for 1,865,000 GBP Premium (2,652,161 USD).
“Quiet Form” (1973), white Seravezza marble, height 16.9 in. Sold at Sotheby’s London: Monday, June 13, 2016 for 1,865,000 GBP Premium (2,652,161 USD).
“Tiki” (1969), Irish green marble with black and white, height 24.6 in. Sold at Christie’s London: June 19, 2018 for 1,808,750 GBP Premium (2,382,442 USD)
“Tiki” (1969), Irish green marble with black and white, height 24.6 in. Sold at Christie’s London: June 19, 2018 for 1,808,750 GBP Premium (2,382,442 USD)

Comparable Works Sold at Auction

“Quiet Form” (1973), white Seravezza marble, height 16.9 in. Sold at Sotheby’s London: Monday, June 13, 2016 for 1,865,000 GBP Premium (2,652,161 USD).
“Quiet Form” (1973), white Seravezza marble, height 16.9 in. Sold at Sotheby’s London: Monday, June 13, 2016 for 1,865,000 GBP Premium (2,652,161 USD).
  • While 7 inches taller than Five Forms with Three Circles, Quiet Form is still conservatively sized and is also sculpted from white marble.
  • Hepworth’s market in 2016 saw sales performing about the same as in 2020. While 2016 sales took place in a climbing market for the artist, 2020 was a dip, so Five Forms with Three Circles has plenty of upside potential as the market looks to regain 2018 highs
“Three Forms (Two Circles)” (1966), Serravezza marble, height 5.3 in. Sold at Christie’s Amsterdam: April 15, 2013 for 265,500 EUR Premium (347, 285 USD).
“Three Forms (Two Circles)” (1966), Serravezza marble, height 5.3 in. Sold at Christie’s Amsterdam: April 15, 2013 for 265,500 EUR Premium (347, 285 USD).
  • The diminutive Three Forms (Two Circles) exceeded its auction estimate in 2013
  • Smaller and less complex than Five Forms with Three Circles
  • Five Forms with Three Circles is nearly twice the size of this smaller version from the same year. However, seven years later, Five Forms with Three Circles sold for only 25% more even though the artist’s market has risen. Three Forms (Two Circles) suggests that Five Forms with Three Circles was undervalued at the time of its 2020 sale
“Three Squares and Circles” (1966), Serravezza marble, height 10.4 in. Sold at Sotheby’s New York: May 3, 2012 for 962,500 USD Premium.
“Three Squares and Circles” (1966), Serravezza marble, height 10.4 in. Sold at Sotheby’s New York: May 3, 2012 for 962,500 USD Premium.
  • Comparable size, white marble, and executed in the same year
  • Similar stacked forms, though slightly more spare composition than Five Forms with Three Circles
  • This comp suggests that Five Forms with Three Circles, which sold within its conservative estimate in 2020, could achieve a much higher price based off abundant shared criteria
“Green Head” (1970), Irish green marble, height 16.9 in. Sold at Christie’s New York: May 16, 2017 for 1,987,500 USD.
“Green Head” (1970), Irish green marble, height 16.9 in. Sold at Christie’s New York: May 16, 2017 for 1,987,500 USD.
  • Green marble may increase its appeal because Hepworth’s record sale was for Figure for Landscape, also green marble, three years earlier
  • More minimal than Five Forms with Three Circles, with curved rather than angular lines
  • While Green Head shares curved attributes with many of Hepworth’s auction records, the “circle” hole of Five Forms with Three Circles aligns with the record-achieving works more than the recessed area of Head

Hepworth in Museum Collections

“Hollow Form with White” (1965), elm, 53 x 23 x 18 ¼ in. Tate, London.
“Hollow Form with White” (1965), elm, 53 x 23 x 18 ¼ in. Tate, London.
“Square with Two Circles” (1963-64), bronze, 124.8 x 61.8 x 30.1 in., casts at Yorkshire Sculpture Park (on loan from Tate); University of Liverpool; Rijksmuseum Kröller-Müller, Otterlo, Holland; Nasher Sculpture Center, Dallas, Texas
“Square with Two Circles” (1963-64), bronze, 124.8 x 61.8 x 30.1 in., casts at Yorkshire Sculpture Park (on loan from Tate); University of Liverpool; Rijksmuseum Kröller-Müller, Otterlo, Holland; Nasher Sculpture Center, Dallas, Texas
“Square with Two Circles” (1963), cast 1 of 3, bronze, 120 ½ x 54 x 12 ½ in., Tate, London
“Square with Two Circles” (1963), cast 1 of 3, bronze, 120 ½ x 54 x 12 ½ in., Tate, London
“Four-Square Walk-Through” (1966), edition of 3, bronze, 169 x 88 x 78 ½ in., casts at Tate (Barbara Hepworth Museum, St Ives); Churchill College, Cambridge (owned by The Fitzwilliam Museum); Norton Simon Museum, Pasadena
“Four-Square Walk-Through” (1966), edition of 3, bronze, 169 x 88 x 78 ½ in., casts at Tate (Barbara Hepworth Museum, St Ives); Churchill College, Cambridge (owned by The Fitzwilliam Museum); Norton Simon Museum, Pasadena

Inquire

Inquire - Art Single