F.E. McWilliam

Eye, Nose and Cheek

1939

Medium
Hoptonwood stone
Dimensions
Object: 889 x 870 x 286 mm
Collection
Tate
Acquisition
Purchased 1966
Reference
T00871

Display caption

From 1931-33 McWilliam lived and worked in Paris. On his return to London he worked in an independent manner but was in close contact with the British artists Henry Moore, Paul Nash and Roland Penrose. The International Surrealist Exhibition of 1936 made a significant impact on him and, during 1939-40, he made a striking series of carvings in wood and stone which he entitled 'The Complete Fragment'. These carvings were mostly part or parts of the human head, greatly enlarged and complete in themselves. McWilliam was interested in the interplay between solid volume and surrounding space in these works, and also how the viewer completes the 'missing' parts of the sculpture in the mind's eye.

Gallery label, August 2004

Catalogue entry

F. E. McWilliam 1909-1992

T00871 Eye, Nose and Cheek 1939

Not inscribed.
Hoptonwood stone, 35 x 34½ x 11¼ (89 x 87 x 28.5).
Purchased from the artist through the Waddington Galleries (Grant-in-Aid) 1966.
Exh. Waddington Galleries, June–July 1966 (5).
Repr. A. T. Broadbent, Sculpture Today, 1944, pl. 24 (measurements wrongly given and dated 1941); Sir Roland Penrose, McWilliam, 1964, pl. 10.

The artist wrote (29 May 1967) that it was the last but one of the ‘Complete Fragment’ series and had not been exhibited until 1966. The last of this series, ‘Profile’, is also in the collection of the Tate Gallery (T00599) and the note in the entry on this work (Tate Gallery Catalogue, Modern British Paintings, Drawings and Sculpture, Vol II, 1964, p. 422), contains a brief statement by the artist on the series.

Published in The Tate Gallery Report 1966–1967, London 1967.

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