THE CHIEF executive of the new Hepworth Gallery in Wakefield said the place could make Yorkshire ‘the centre of the world’ for sculpture.
David Liddiment said the gallery, which opens on May 21, would have 44 unseen Barbara Hepworth works and could lead ‘major regeneration’ in Wakefield.
“The identity of Yorkshire has never been stronger,” he said. “It used to be that we were mean, dour, straight speaking – all the things we were proud of – but now it is about so much more.
“Yorkshire is about to become the centre of the world for world-class sculpture. It’s a huge step forward.”
Liddiment said the gallery – which will have 10 galleries and include space for new artists’ works three times a year – will be open to commercial partnerships.
The gallery has been designed by David Chipperfield Architects, and will also feature an auditorium, learning studios, garden, café and shop, with views over the River Calder.
Works by Hepworth’s contemporaries including Ben Nicholson, Graham Sutherland, Paul Nash, Patrick Heron, and international artists such as Piet Mondrian, Constantin Brancusi and Alberto Giacometti will also feature at the gallery.