2005 - Antony Gormley: Field for the British Isles

Antony Gormley: Field for the British Isles

The British sculptor, Antony Gormley, is renowned for his distinctive representations of the human form. Field for the British Isles is one of his most famous works of art. This mesmerising installation comprises a sea of 40,000 miniature terracotta figures and has been described by the artist as ‘twenty-five tons of clay energised by fire, sensitised by touch and made conscious by being given eyes ... a field of gazes which looks at the observer making him or her its subject.’ The figures were handmade in 1993 by a hundred people, aged seven to seventy, from a community in St Helen’s, Merseyside.

Since the Arts Council Collection acquired Field in 1995, the work has been seen in venues as diverse as a disused railway shed, a church, cathedral cloisters, art galleries and an empty department store. Field is presented in a new light at Longside Gallery. Framed by the Yorkshire landscape, the work is seen within a rural context for the first time, enabling the relationship between Field and nature to come into view.





The Arts Council Collection is the UK's most widely seen collection of modern and contemporary art.

With more than 8,000 works by over 2,000 artists, it can be seen in exhibitions and public displays across the country and beyond. This website offers unprecedented access to the Collection, and information about each work can be found on this site.