Helen Marten wins 30,000 Hepworth Prize for Sculpture – BBC News

<figure class=”media-landscape” has-caption full-width lead”> Image copyright Juergen Teller/PA

Image caption Helen Marten is also on the shortlist for this year’s Turner Prize

Helen Marten has won the inaugural Hepworth Prize for Sculpture, scooping the 30,000 prize as a result.

The award, for making “a significant contribution to the development of contemporary sculpture” is given to a British or UK-based artist.

Marten, also shortlisted for the 2016 Turner Prize, is “one of the strongest and most singular voices” in British art, said chief judge Simon Wallis.

The prize was presented at Yorkshire’s Hepworth Wakefield Gallery.

For her winning entry, Marten presented seven of her recent works which fold familiar images and objects from everyday surroundings into intricately crafted installations.

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The artist used a variety of materials, including wood, ceramic, metal, leather, plastic and fabrics in her work, while more unusual materials, such as feathers, shells and gum-wrappers, also feature.

Speaking about her own work, Marten said: “In a world collapsing under the pressure of billions of personal interfaces, it is exciting to celebrate our relationship to physical touch.”

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Image caption The Hepworth Wakefield was designed by architect David Chipperfield

Wallis, who is also director of the gallery, added that “her refined craft and intellectual precision address our relationship to objects and materials in a digital age” and described her as a “fitting winner”.

The prize aims to “demystify” contemporary sculpture, with visitors to the exhibition being encouraged to debate and judge it for themselves.

The other three shortlisted artists were Phyllida Barlow, Steven Claydon and David Medalla and the award was presented by Burberry boss Christopher Bailey.

<figure class=”media-landscape” has-caption full-width”> Image copyright Todd-White Art Photography

Image caption Steven Claydon’s sensory work was on the shortlist

Marten, who was born in 1985 in Macclesfield, had her work included in last year’s Venice Biennale.

The Hepworth Wakefield gallery opened in 2011 and features the largest number of works by artist Barbara Hepworth on permanent display anywhere in the UK.

Image copyright Andy Romer Photography courtesy VENUS
Image caption David Medalla was also up for the prize

Hepworth, who was born in the Yorkshire city in 1903, was a contemporary of Castleford-born Henry Moore, with the pair among the most highly regarded sculptors of the 20th Century.

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Image caption Phyllida Barlow’s monumental constructions were also nominated

She attended Leeds School of Art in the 1920s and opened a studio in St Ives, Cornwall, in 1949. The artist and sculptor was made a CBE in the 1958 New Year Honours list and died in a fire at her studio in 1975.

The exhibition for the prize, displaying the entries of all four finalists, will run until 19 February 2017.

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