Researching Women in Sculpture: Events Programme

We look forward to welcoming you back for a series of in-person talks, conferences and workshops, which will take place during spring and summer 2022. Full details of the programme will be announced soon.

Recent years have witnessed a renewed interest in women’s contribution to the field of sculpture, with outputs ranging from publications, research projects, exhibitions, podcasts and lecture series.

Yet, despite this increased activity, the very act of researching women’s sculptural practices is still problematic, beset by challenges due to lack of accessible archival material and poor documentation of artworks, many of which are geographically dispersed across public and private collections. Where archival material exists, it is often split across multiple collections or remains difficult to identify due to changes to a woman’s working name or having been catalogued under a husband’s papers.

This research season aims to provide a space to reflect upon such issues, investigating archival and collecting practices that have historically obscured work by women practicing in sculpture and suggesting strategies for how these might be addressed going forward.

Events will provide a spotlight on archives and collections with strengths in the area of women’s sculptural production, as well as creating links between related collections. Topics will include the role of art school archives, oral histories and women’s studio-home museums, and there will be opportunities to gain practical advice on archive and collections care. Particular attention will be given to the intersection of gender, class, sexuality and race in collecting practices and the need for archives to improve representation of work by women of colour and those identifying as trans or non-binary.

Researching Women in Sculpture is organised in collaboration with Rosamund Lily West, who worked as Research Curator from 2019 to 2021 on the Paul Mellon Centre funded project Pioneering Women at the Heart of the Royal Society of Sculptors. Rosamund is currently completing her PhD on post-war London County Council sculpture on housing estates with Kingston University.


Past events in this series:


Breaking the Mould: Sculpture by Women since 1945

Wednesday 4 May
In-person workshop, 10:00am - 1:00pm

Artist Permindar Kaur and curators Hilary Gresty and Natalie Rudd discuss the research, display and acquisition of sculpture by women.

Find out more


Family Collections and Scattered Archives

Wednesday 4 May
In-person workshop, 2:00 - 5:00pm

In this workshop, we will examine the important role played by family collections and archives in researching sculpture by women and the challenges posed by dispersed or missing archive material.

Find out more


Women's Studio Museums

Wednesday 11 May
In-person workshop, 9:30am - 12:30pm

Dorich House Museum, Kingston Upon Thames

This workshop will consider Dorich House Museum’s role as a centre to support contemporary women’s creative practices and the representation of women in studio museums more generally.

Speakers include Fiona Fisher (Curator, Dorich House Museum) and Jonathan Black (co-author of Dora Gordine: Sculptor, Artist, Designer) .

Find out more


Art School Archives

Wednesday 11 May
In-person workshop, 2:15 - 6pm

Town House, Kingston University Penrhyn Road Campus, Kingston Upon Thames

This workshop will discuss the role of art school archives in research, and the structures of support provided by such institutions.

Speakers include Fran Lloyd, Dayna Miller (both Kingston School of Art, Kingston University), Liz Bruchet (University College London) and Althea Greenan (Women’s Art Library).

Find out more


Venue details

Venue address

Henry Moore Institute
The Headrow
United Kingdom
T: 0113 246 7467

Opening times

Galleries: Tuesday to Sunday, 10am - 5pm

Research Library: Monday to Saturday, 10am - 5pm; Sunday, 1 - 5pm
Archive of Sculptors' Papers: Tuesday to Friday, by prior appointment

Comments (2)

Jsmes Dunnett

10 May 2022 18:34

I have been trying for quite a while to draw attention to the career and work of rocket-designer-turned-sculptor Dorothy Dick (born 1932, Glasgow), and I wrote an article about her and her work entitled 'Dorothy Dick - a Battle between Science and Art', published in the PMSA's 3rd Dimension on-line magazine on 24 May 2015. It would be good if somehow the Researching Women In Sculpture programme at the Henry Moore Institute could notice her work, especially as she is someone who acknowledges the influence of Henry Moore but has used it in her own very distinct way.


21 April 2022 16:19

Hello, I simply want to tell that I have been working on the history of women sculptresses. I mostly worked so far on nineteeth and beginning of 20 th centuries, and my research includes very reknown names : Kobro, Hepworth, Nevelson Richier, and Bourgeois. It is in French and actually sent to a printer. I have an independant and available article on Richier in a Aix-Marseille University book (in French) . Best regards S Coellier

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