Single Form (Chun Quoit)
1903 – 1975
Single Form (Chûn Quoit)
Plaster, painted brown, on a wooden base painted grey
106 × 66.5 × 45 cm
Presented by the artist’s daughters, Rachel Kidd and Sarah Bowness, through the Trustees of the Barbara Hepworth Estate and the Art Fund
Single Form (Chûn Quoit) and the related walnut carving Single Form (September) (1961) were created with Dag Hammarskjöld in mind. Hammarskjöld was the secretary general of the United Nations from 1953, and a friend of Hepworth’s who also admired and collected her work. When he died on 18 September 1961, Hepworth made the 3-metre-high bronze Single Form (Memorial), which was developed into the monumental Single Form (1961–4) for the United Nations Secretariat Building in New York, commissioned in Hammarskjöld’s memory. The textured bronze of Single Form (Chûn Quoit) has an incised circle rather than the hollow or the pierced hole of the other variants on this theme.
Titles always came later for Hepworth, after a work was completed, and were loose associations. Chûn Quoit is a Neolithic chamber tomb of the type known as quoits in the Penwith peninsular, and is the only example in perfect condition. It is between St Ives and Land’s End, in a landscape that had a profound effect on Hepworth.