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Geometry of Fear: Modern British Sculpture in the Early Cold War

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Millennium Art Gallery

48 Arundel Gate

Sheffield

S1 2PP

United Kingdom

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In this illustrated talk, the art historian Robert Burstow will examine the work of the sculptors featured in the exhibition, including Kenneth Armitage, Reg Butler, Lynn Chadwick, Elisabeth Frink and Eduardo Paolozzi. He will describe their distinctive representation of humans, animals and insects in cast or welded and beaten metal, with characteristically flattened, elongated or skeletal forms, and scarred and abraded surfaces. Invoking the critic Herbert Read’s famous assertion that their sculpture embodied ‘the geometry of fear’, he will discuss the extent to which it expressed anxieties triggered by the onset of ‘Cold War’ in the post-Atomic age.

Dr Robert Burstow is Associate Professor in History and Theory of Art at the University of Derby. He has published extensively on modern sculpture in post-war Britain, including the book chapter ‘Geometries of Hope and Fear: the Iconography of Atomic Science and Nuclear Anxiety in the Sculpture of World-War and Cold-War Britain' in British Art in the Nuclear Age (2014).

Image: Kenneth Armitage, Model for the Krefeld Monument


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Millennium Art Gallery

48 Arundel Gate

Sheffield

S1 2PP

United Kingdom

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