Sophie Bowness will list this bronze as no. BH 513f in the forthcoming Hepworth catalogue raisonné.
Prior to her death in 1975, Barbara Hepworth created her last great masterpiece The Family of Man, 1970. Composed of nine bronze figures representing Ancestors, Parents or Children, of which the present work is included. The Family of Man marks Hepworth's return to sculptural groupings and illustrates her new perception of the relationship between man and nature (A.M. Hammacher, Barbara Hepworth, London, 1987, p. 203).
In her works from 1936-1946, Hepworth felt that she, "became the object. I was the figure in the landscape and every sculpture contained to a greater or lesser degree the ever-changing forms and contours embodying my own response to a given position in that landscape... There is no landscape without the human figure." (quoted in, op. cit., pp. 201-202). Over the next three decades, the shift to a more abstract and comprehensive sense of space became apparent. In a conversation with Alan Bowness in 1970, Hepworth stated: "I'm not exactly the sculpture in the landscape any more. I think of works as objects which rise out of the land or the sea, mysteriously." (quoted in ibid., p. 202).