Tate Britain Exhibition

Figure Totem Beast: Sculpture in Britain in the 1950s

Bernard Meadows, ‘Startled Bird’ 1955
Bernard Meadows, Startled Bird 1955. Tate. © The estate of Bernard Meadows

The uncompromising sculpture that emerged in Britain after the Second World War

Reflecting the anxieties of the Cold War, artists used new processes and materials to make work that was often uncompromising, immediate and brutal. One critic described it as a ‘Geometry of Fear’.

This exhibition in the Duveen Galleries features younger artists including Lynn Chadwick, Elizabeth Frink and Eduardo Paolozzi alongside older artists such as Jacob Epstein and Henry Moore. It also shows how the approach taken by the young British artists can be measured against the work of international artists. This includes entries to a competition to design a monument to the ‘Unknown Political Prisoner’ in 1953.

Sir Eduardo Paolozzi, ‘Shattered Head’ 1956
Sir Eduardo Paolozzi
Shattered Head 1956
© The Eduardo Paolozzi Foundation
Lynn Chadwick, ‘The Fisheater’ 1951
Lynn Chadwick
The Fisheater 1951
© The estate of Lynn Chadwick. All Rights Reserved 2018 / Bridgeman Images
Geoffrey Clarke, ‘Complexities of Man’ 1951
Geoffrey Clarke
Complexities of Man 1951
© Geoffrey Clarke
Dame Elisabeth Frink, ‘Dead Hen’ 1957
Dame Elisabeth Frink
Dead Hen 1957
© Frink Estate
Louise Hutchinson, ‘Three-fold Head’ c.1953
Louise Hutchinson
Three-fold Head c.1953
© reserved
Luciano Minguzzi The Unknown Political Prisoner: Figure within Barbed Wire 1952 Tate

Luciano Minguzzi The Unknown Political Prisoner: Figure within Barbed Wire 1952 Tate

Tate Britain

Duveen Galleries

London SW1P 4RG
Plan your visit


29 October 2018 – 4 February 2019

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