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Elisabeth Frink: Fragility and Power

Elisabeth Frink-Easter Head- © Frink Estate and Archive executors. Courtesy of The Ingram Collection, Image © JP Bland 2016

[A]bbot Hall Art Gallery will stage a major exhibition of work by emotive sculptor Dame Elisabeth Frink – a quarter of a century after her death.

Elisabeth Frink: Fragility and Power will run from 22 June until 29 September.

The exhibition will feature bronze sculpture, maquettes, and works on paper made throughout the artist’s career.

One of the most exciting sculptors of the twentieth century, Frink ignored commercial fashions, creating works that combine the fragile nature of humanity with its power.

This summer exhibition will be the first large scale show of Frink’s work in the north of England.

Kerri Offord, Lakeland Arts’ Head of Curatorial said: “Frink was uncompromising in her creative output, creating exciting and emotive works that were both autobiographical and politically charged.

“Her individual style and unique subjects bucked the main trends of the twentieth century, and yet her work was always in style.”

It is the first time Abbot Hall has dedicated an entire exhibition to Frink.

The exhibition is presented in collaboration with The Ingram Collection. There will also be a number of works on loan from private collectors that have never been seen in public.

Fragility and Power coincides with increased attention on the sculptor who was born in Suffolk in 1930 and died in Dorset on 18 April 1993.

Visitors will see Frink’s sculptures, bronzes and works on paper while also investigating her personal experiences and influences.

Two large works Walking, Madonna, 1981 and Riace lll, 1986, will be displayed in the Georgian entrance hall and ground floor galleries at Abbot Hall. Upstairs, the exhibition will continue across three rooms.

The first gallery will display works by those who influenced and inspired Frink as a young art student in London. Works by FE McWilliam and Reg Butler, among others, are on show.

Two further galleries will explore Frink’s thematic approach to her work. Frink’s experiences as a child with an absent father at Dunkirk, hiding from a German fighter plane near her home in Suffolk, to the discovery of a book on Rodin at a Convent School in Devon and her encounters with sexism at art school, can all be found in her artwork

The exhibition coincides with another Abbot Hall show which focuses on Frink’s greatest influence – Auguste Rodin.

Rodin: rethinking the fragment runs from 10 August to 27 October. It explores how Rodin, the originator of modern sculpture, was inspired by art of ancient Greece and Rome.

This exhibition is a British Museum Partnership Spotlight Loan. Generously supported by the Dorset Foundation in memory of Harry M Weinrebe.

Rethinking the fragment will feature The Thinker, on loan from the Burrell Collection in Glasgow, alongside three objects from the British Museum.

Both exhibitions will be the subject of two evening lectures at Abbot Hall:

Elisabeth Frink and her Influences takes place on 13 September and Auguste Rodin and his Influences on 27 September. Both start at 6pm.

Standard admission for each talk is £15/Friends £10. Book on both lectures for £20/Friends £15.

Further information about the exhibition here.

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