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Estimated at £3000-5000, it then went on to make £90,000 (Pick of the Week, ATG No 2294). Fisher is quoted as saying that the sculpture “clearly shows Hepworth’s influence”.

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The £90,000 John Skeaping sculpture at Dreweatts, as reported in ATG No 2294.

Skeaping and Hepworth worked with a great deal of artistic unity at the time and up until the breakdown of their marriage in 1931, when their art also began to drift in different directions.

You do not find auctioneers or cataloguers saying of a piece of work by Hepworth that it clearly shows the influence of Skeaping! It is time that John Skeaping is recognised as more than ‘the first husband of Barbara Hepworth’. After all, he taught her to carve.

The Henry Moore Foundation book The Sculpture of John Skeaping by Jonathan Blackwood, published by Lund Humphries, makes these facts very clear.

Nicholas Skeaping

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