Despite this, The Names of the Hare was Flanagan’s first significant open air exhibition. It brought together a collection of monumental bronzes, primarily Hares, but also included horses, an elephant with children and a shape placed on an upturned anvil called The Voyager. The selection illustrated the broad range of Flanagan’s bronzes which he began in 1979: from the Kouros Horse (1986) and the Bronze Horse (1983), inspired by the bronze horse of St Mark’s in Venice, to the sketched quality of hares such as The Drummer (1990/91) and The Cricketer (1989), reflecting the process of having been cast from scaled up hand-size clay maquettes.
Sited in Yorkshire Sculpture Park’s Formal Garden, these fifteen sculptures – from two to almost five metres high – had an extraordinary presence, filling the garden with a joyful vitality. They included the Fifteen Foot Leaping Hare (1990), never before seen in Britain.
Barry Flanagan was born in 1941 in Prestatyn, North Wales. He studied architecture and sculpture at Birmingham College of Art and Crafts from 1957 to 1958 and sculpture at St Martin’s School of Art, London, from 1964 to 1966. From 1967-71 he taught at St Martin’s and at the Central School of Art and Design, London.