Sheila Hicks transforms Coal Drops Yard with monumental sculpture "Woven Wonders"
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Sheila Hicks transforms Coal Drops Yard with monumental sculpture "Woven Wonders"
Iconic American artist, Sheila Hicks, today unveiled her arresting new sculpture ‘Woven Wonders’ at Coal Drops Yard in King’s Cross. Open to the public from today until 16th October.

LONDON.- A new monumental outdoor site-specific installation by renowned artist Sheila Hicks (b. 1934, Hastings, Nebraska; residing in Paris since 1964) has been unveiled today at Coal Drops Yard in King’s Cross. Hicks is is known for her ground-breaking work which incorporates distinctive colours, natural materials, and personal narratives.

Responding to the carefully restored Victorian architecture by British architect Thomas Heatherwick's studio, and moreover the space created between the buildings, Sheila Hicks has made a vast, floating sculpture which transforms Coal Drops Yard into an intertwined environment of colour and moving forms. As with much of Sheila Hicks' work, soft materials have been repurposed to take on a new life. Hicks's sculpture in the air converses with natural forces including wind, rain, sunshine, clouds, shifting shadows and glimpses of sun rays; providing a space to walk around, sit, read or contemplate.

Creating a conversation between a sculpture within an existing architectural environment is at the heart of Hicks' work. “Woven Wonders” acknowledges the two old coal storage buildings on the east and west sides of the site which have been joined by their roofs, forming a central spatial core. Hicks relies on these two buildings, between where parallel cables are suspended and organized like the warp threads of a colossal loom. Hicks' nod to the textile industry of the Victorian era connects the site's past with the present, the artist installing ribbons of colored fabrics criss crossing across the space of Coal Drops Yard.

Andrew Bonacina, Chief Curator, The Hepworth Wakefield, comments: “I’m delighted that Sheila Hicks’ spectacular commission for Coal Drops Yard is coinciding with her major survey exhibition at The Hepworth Wakefield. The two projects offer an insight into the enormous breadth of Hicks’ work: from the intimate and monumental gallery-based works that respond to architectural space at The Hepworth, to a public commission in Kings Cross which captures Hicks’ profound sensitivity to the spaces we encounter and inhabit in our daily lives. Hicks’ work finds a particularly rich context in Kings Cross alongside works by many other international artists who have created works in direct response to the evolving landscape of Kings Cross.”

Sheila Hicks was born in 1934 in Hastings, Nebraska and has resided in Paris since 1964. Hicks received her BFA and MFA degrees from Yale University School of Art. During a Fulbright scholarship in 1957-58 to paint in Chile, she deepened her interest in experimenting with fibers and later founded workshops in Mexico, Chile, and South Africa, and worked in Germany, Morocco, India, Saudi Arabia and Japan.

Hicks exhibits widely, and has shown work in the Venice Biennale, Italy (2017), Sydney Biennial, Australia (2016), Whitney Biennial, New York (2014), São Paulo Biennial, Brazil (2012). Recent solo museum exhibitions include "Off Grid", The Hepworth, Wakefield (current), Nasher Sculpture Center, Dallas and The Bass Museum, Miami (2019), Centre Pompidou, Paris (2018).

The artist’s work has been acquired by museums worldwide including Metropolitan Museum of Art, NY; Museum of Modern Art, NY; Museum of Fine Arts, Boston; National Gallery of Art, Washington, DC; Art Institute of Chicago; Tate, London; Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam; Centre Pompidou, Paris; the Museum of Modern Art, Tokyo.

Since 2012, Sheila Hicks has collaborated with Alison Jacques, London and realised solo shows in the gallery in 2021, 2017 and 2013.

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