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Cerith Wyn Evans and White Cube donate important neon work.

29 Jan 2021

Cerith Wyn Evans, winner of The Hepworth Prize for Sculpture 2018, together with White Cube, have generously donated a three-part neon sculpture entitled Come (II) to Wakefield’s collection.

Wyn Evans’ works in neon are a central part of his practice, a material that lends itself to his explorations of relationships between language and communicative forms. His suspended neons often appear like free-floating drawings, abstractly manifesting references to film, music, philosophy and literature, while also engaging with the very physical relationship between sculpture, bodies and space.

Come II is composed of three variously sized rings which map out a movement through space and frame elements of the environment around them. The form of the ring or void resonates with Barbara Hepworth’s use of this motif which she used when piercing her sculptures in order to activate the space around them.

Simon Wallis, Director of The Hepworth Wakefield, said: ‘We are so grateful for the wonderful generosity of Cerith Wyn Evans and White Cube in donating this important work to Wakefield. As we have no acquisition budget with which to develop our art collection, we rely entirely on major gifts such as this to ensure our collection grows and develops by representing leading artists now working. It builds on the founding spirit of the collection which championed the work of both Barbara Hepworth and Henry Moore.’

Cerith Wyn Evans first came to attention in the 1980s as an experimental filmmaker and collaborator across artistic disciplines, including dance and performance. Subsequently he expanded his approach to incorporate sculpture. His works combine ideas and influences from art, history, philosophy and science in order to transform our perception of the world around us. Wyn Evans started working with neon in 1994, a material that allows him to explore the relationships between language and gesture, light and space. For The Hepworth Prize for Sculpture, Wyn Evans created a monumental sculpture comprising 37 glass flutes arranged in an arc playing a composition created by the artist. At the time Wyn Evans said of The Hepworth Wakefield: ‘It’s refreshing in its acknowledgment that the vicissitudes of light and time are intrinsic to the appreciation of sculpture and plastic form that for all to long has merely been considered 3-Dimensional.’