Anne Purkiss is a photographer whose portfolio includes portraits of artists, scientists and public figures as well as photographs of artwork. This exhibition presents a collection of Purkiss portrait photographs of sculptors, all of whom have exhibited at Yorkshire Sculpture Park
over the last 40 years.
The exhibition documents artists at various stages in their careers, covering three decades, through photographs borne out of Purkiss personal interest in sculptors as a subject and those commissioned as part of her regular freelance work for press and government agencies, museums and galleries.
The artists most recent photograph previously unseen shows Tony Cragg in his studio in Wuppertal, Germany, preparing for his major YSP exhibition, which also opened on 4 March 2017. Other new works feature Sophie Ryder during the installation of her exhibition in Salisbury Cathedral; and Martin Creed outside the entrance to the Barbican in Londons Silk Street, near his office.
Andy Goldsworthy, whose site-specific installations at YSP include Hanging Trees and Shadow Stone Fold, is featured in a photograph taken on Cocking Down, West Sussex, in 2002 during the inaugural walk of his Chalk Stones Trail. It was assumed that the stones would last approximately two years, 14 years later the weathered stones still exist. Fellow land artist, David Nash whose wooden, stone and charcoal works are also shown in the open air at YSP is seen chainsawing a large block of wood, with the scenic brackdrop of the rugged Blaenau Ffestiniog landscape.
Earlier works show Dame Elisabeth Frink in her Dorset studio in 1990, prior to her 60th birthday, sat alongside the sculpture Seated Figure II; and Lynn Chadwick in the garden of his home in Lypiatt Park, Gloucestershire, in September 1995. Dhruva Mistry and Trupti Patel were photographed in their studio in Essex, in October 1991, at the time of Mistrys election as a member of the Royal Academy of Arts.
In YSPs 40th year, the exhibition offers the chance to reflect on the wealth of talent that has graced the Parks rolling 500 acre landscape, from young Visiting Artists such as David Murphy to sculptural masters like Sir Anthony Caro.
The exhibition coincides with the release of Purkiss new book Sculptors: 19862016, which features portraits of more than 70 British sculptors, including those exhibited in the YSP show. A photograph of YSPs Founding and Executive Director Peter Murray CBE, who has written the foreword for the publication, is also featured.