Making It: Sculpture in Britain 1977-1986

The late 1970s and 1980s witnessed the emergence of a younger generation of artists working in the United Kingdom who began to receive international attention for practices which, although incredibly diverse, shared a revived interest in the sculpted object, in materials and in ideas around making.

Some of these artists, such as Kate Blacker, Tony Cragg, Richard Deacon, Antony Gormley, Shirazeh Houshiary, Anish Kapoor, Richard Wentworth and Alison Wilding, rose to prominence under the loose banner ‘New British Sculpture’, while other artists, such as Eric Bainbridge, Helen Chadwick, Julian Opie, Cornelia Parker and Richard Wilson, were forging reputations for their innovative approaches to sculpture.

Making It: Sculpture in Britain 1977­1986 provides a comprehensive insight into the explosion of contemporary sculpture in Britain during the late 1970s and 1980s, launching the careers of some the most re­nowned contemporary artists that the UK has produced.

Artists featured are Edward Allington, Eric Bainbridge, Kate Blacker, Helen Chadwick, John Cobb, Stephen Cox, Tony Cragg, Richard Deacon, Kenneth Draper, Gareth Fisher, Barry Flanagan, John Gibbons, Antony Gormley, Ian Hamilton Finlay, Tim Head, Shirazeh Houshiary, Anish Kapoor, Michael Kenny, Andrew Logan, David Nash, Martin Naylor, Julian Opie, Eduardo Paolozzi, Emma Park, Cornelia Parker, Carl Plackman, Elizabeth Rosser, Veronica Ryan, Michael Sandle, Geoffrey Smedley, William Tucker, William Turnbull, Jean-Luc Vilmouth, Richard Wentworth, Alison Wilding, Richard Wilson and Gary Woodley.


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Foreword by Jill Constantine

Essay by Jon Wood

Texts by Marjorie Allthorpe-Guyton, Lewis Biggs, Iwona Blazwick, Ann Compton, Richard Cork, Isobel Johnstone, Nicholas Logsdail, Henry Meyric Hughes, Sandy Nairne, Michael Newman, John Roberts, Mike Tooby



Making It was a 2015 Arts Council Collection Touring Exhibition




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.