Barbara Hepworth Disc With Strings Sculptures

Private Collection

Disc with Strings (Sun) is one of a series of sculptures by Dame Barbara Hepworth depicting abstract natural forms in pierced simple shapes. The sculpture is constructed of folded bronze sheet. Cotton strings weave through the sheets, intersect, and twist across the surface. Editions of nine were issued of Disc with Strings (Sun) as well as its “twin” Disc with Strings (Moon). This sculpture was cast in 1969.

We were contracted to perform the conservation treatment of the Hepworth sculpture. Cleaning tests and treatment were carried out between July and November of 2016 at our studio in Forestville, MD. The goals of the treatment were to reduce the unevenness of existing patina, reduce discolored splatters and fingerprints, and achieve the appearance of an aged and maintained sculptural work. Treatment was designed to minimize intervention and avoid removal of the historic cotton string that would have led to its loss and replacement.

The sculpture was gently cleaned, frayed textile threads were consolidated, and a protective wax coating was applied carefully and buffed to high-shine. Written and photographic documentation and maintenance recommendations were furnished to the client.