It is just one week until our exhibition The Vorticists: Manifesto for a Modern World opens at Tate Britain. Among many of the fabulous works that are being installed in the galleries is Jacob Epstein’s extraordinary work Rock Drill.

In its original form, Sir Jacob Epstein's 'The Rock Drill' (1913-1915) Birmingham City Art Gallery © the estate of Jacob Epstein

In its original form, Sir Jacob Epstein’s The Rock Drill 1913–15 Birmingham City Art Gallery

© the estate of Jacob Epstein

Above is an old, grainy photograph of the original work.

Rock Drill was reconstructed in 1973. The piece arrived at the gallery in its large crate this week. Here you can see it being assembled by our dexterous team of art handlers.

Epstein said about Rock Drill: “It is a thing prophetic of much of the Great War and as such within the experience of nearly all and has therefore very definite human associations.” I’ll be going into more detail about Epstein’s piece - and what he said about it - in a future blog.

Chris Stephens is co-curator of The Vorticists: Manifesto for a Modern World and Curator (Modern British Art) & Head of Displays at Tate Britain.