What a glorious day it was yesterday to be at Kenwood House.
I’m always vowing to swim in the ponds in Hampstead Heath. It was warm enough to take off my winter coat and cardigan but not quite warm enough for the bikini. Instead I did a little more of something else I vowed to do – write!
After a piece of chocolate fudge cake of course. And after a brisk walk around the Heath for inspiration. I’ve been feeling a little heartbroken as my Grandma had another stroke over the weekend so had written more love letters. They were in my bag so thought I would do some sneaky drops. I popped one among the snowdrops poking through the ground, and one in the nook of a giant tree trunk – I love those big old trees – imagine the kind of things they’ve seen and heard over the years. I was only a short distance away from Kenwood House when I noticed a lonely sculpture through the trees – Barbara Hepworth’s ‘Empyrean’.
I got to learn a little more about Barbara Hepworth last summer when staying in St Ives. Although originally from Wakefield, she resided in St Ives for most of her working life until she died after a fire in her studios. Her home is now a museum run by the Tate, exhibiting a fantastic collection of her work and famous sculpture garden. As I have discovered since, you can also spot her work on the side of John Lewis at Oxford Circus, the United Nations building in New York, and in the gardens of Kenwood House on Hampstead Heath. I like it that you can touch their often smooth forms, look through the holes and gaps to try and see what she was trying to frame or get us to see beyond. Inclusive, interactive and accessible.
Following the path a few metres further into the park, I saw a couple and their dog admiring the view over the Heath. Right there alongside them was a Henry Moore. Barbara and Henry met as students at the Leeds School of Art. They haven’t done too badly for themselves have they?
I love London parks.
Here’s some pics from the day and from the Barbara Hepworth Sculpture garden in St Ives.
Barbara Hepworth studio and gardens, St Ives