Letters reveal postnatal crisis of Barbara Hepworth

Previously unpublished correspondence sheds new light on artist’s struggle to pursue career while caring for triplets alone For decades, Barbara Hepworth has been portrayed as a coldly ambitious artist who sent her children away when they were infants so that she could focus on her work. Now, however, that view is to be challenged by previously unpublished letters showing how deeply Hepworth struggled to care alone for her newborn triplets, and how she agonised over what to do for the best. Hepworth’s plunge into postnatal crisis, revealed in a major new book about the Hampstead modernists, is detailed in letters written by her and her friends in the aftermath of the babies’ birth in 1934. They shed new light on Hepworth’s feelings about her children and her relationship with their father, the artist Ben Nicholson . Continue reading...