"The great bronze hares which Barry Flanagan has been producing since the 1980s are one of the most personal and recognisable artistic endeavours of the second half of this century. Spectacular in size, bitingly ironic and bold, as well as terribly individualistic, they are totally unlike what we normally see in museums and galleries around the world" (E. Juncosa, exh. cat., Barry Flanagan, London, Waddington Galleries, 1994, p. 5). The motif of the hare clearly held great significance for the artist; it appeared repeatedly in Flanagan's work over a period of many years. When asked why it held such appeal, he said, "I find that the hare is a rich and expressive form that can carry the conventions of the cartoon and the attributes of the human into the animal world. So I use the hare as a vehicle to entertain, abstract from the human figure, choosing the hare to behave as a human occasionally" (B. Flanagan, quoted in E. Juncosa, Barry Flanagan Sculpture 1965-2005, Dublin, 2006, p. 65). Acrobats demonstrates why Flanagan was praised not only by critics and fellow artists, but also why he became a true people's artist. He created numerous and much beloved public sculptures that have been collected and exhibited all over the world, and his works are in the holdings of dozens of museums and corporate collections as well. The present work infuses creative passion with freshness and a unique sense of joie de vivre.