Gertrude Hermes

British, b.1901, d.1983

More People

  • Presented by Rex Nan Kivell, 1953
  • Wood engraving
  • 510 x 555mm
  • 94/223
  • 1935

This is the largest wood engraving in the exhibition, and was cut from several blocks glued and clamped to one another. Gertrude Hermes’ interest in the human form was mirrored in her work as a sculptor, and like her contemporary Eric Gill she was able to successfully transition between both mediums. Unlike the hard-edged style of many of Gill’s wood engravings, however, Hermes’ line is sinuous and flowing with various tonal gradations throughout the work. As a sculptor she had a good understanding of human forms, which in More People seem to overlap and merge into one another.

The Golden Age 18 December 2015 – 1 May 2016

earlier labels about this work
  • More People was included in the annual Society of Wood Engravers exhibition in 1935. The dream-like qualities of the composition show Gertrude Hermes’ interest in Surrealism. Her training as a sculptor comes out in the expert way that she has depicted the forms of the figures. From 1922 Hermes studied under Leon Underwood at the School of Painting and Sculpture, where she met Blair Hughes-Stanton. The pair married in 1926 and settled in Wales, where they worked as illustrators for the Gregynog Press. Her work as an engraver is today highly regarded and she is considered to be one of the most important British printmakers of the 20th century. (Label date unkown)