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Des Hughes – Stretch Out and Wait 28.09.15

Des Hughes’ show is an homage to Henry Moore. In 1980 Moore gave a public sculpture to the town of Castleford – Working Model of Draped Reclining Figure. The gift prompted a show of artworks by local school children – Henry Moore and the Children of Castleford.

Hughes traced the impact of Moore’s gift through press-cuttings, posters, letters, photos and other artefacts from the Hepworth archive. In response, Hughes has himself created a pair of reclining figures that will be displayed at Castleford Academy and The Hepworth Wakefield along with work by school children.

Hughes work is displayed in cabinets, like those found in the modernist home of architect Ernö Goldfinger. His series of ‘flints’ are on display, bronze sculptures made to look like stones, with screwed up crisp packets unceremoniously poked into the holes. Hughes calls this “productive vandalism” and references the vandalism that led to the eventual removal of Moore’s Draped Reclining Figure. Hughes challenges Moore and Hepworth’s convictions, “truth to materials”, subverting materials and playing with the authority of the artist and the preconceptions of the viewer.

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