The Sculptor Speaks (2020)

Additional Information

The Sculptor Speaks is a resounding of a 1961 tape by British sculptor Barbara Hepworth. The tape’s initial purpose was for a pre-recorded talk with slides for the British Council. Having unearthed the tape at the British Library, Olivia Louvel has designed for it a complete new sound environment. Fascinated by the interplay of voice and sculpture, her practice is built upon a long-standing exploration of the voice, sung or spoken, and its manipulation through digital technology. She is applying principles of sculpture to Hepworth’s voice to manipulate its texture, as direct carving - exposing the material itself, resulting often in the abstract.

Visually, Louvel draws from Hepworth’s singular sculptural relationship to the landscape of Cornwall. Emerging from the seascape, a geometric line is being slowly drawn, completing a full meditative cycle.

Premiered and broadcast on Resonance Extra as a version 1.0 [transmission], this audio-visual iteration [contactless] is for the digital realm and will be followed by a gallery [installation] in future.

Working at the intersection of creation and documentation, Louvel broadens the understanding of Barbara Hepworth’s legacy through an aural investigation of the voice. The sculptor speaks - anew.  

'The Sculptor Speaks' v1.0 [transmission]

'The Sculptor Speaks' v2.0 [contactless]



composed and produced by Olivia Louvel

visual production: Olivia Louvel

visual After Effects: Antoine Kendall


Thank you to

Sophie Bowness, trustee of the Hepworth Estate

Resonance Extra / Resonance FM

DMSA, University of Brighton