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Robert Adams (1917-1984)

Biography of sculptor and painter Robert Adams (1917-1984)

Robert Adams (1917-1984), sculptor and painter, studied at Northampton School of Art from 1933 to 1944. He was employed as an engineer during World War II.

Post-war, Adams made abstract paintings but soon turned exclusively to sculpture, working in natural materials: wood, slate, plaster and stone.

In 1949, Adams began working in metal and came in contact with Victor Pasmore and a group of artists around him, including Adrian Heath, Anthony Hill, Kenneth Martin and Mary Martin. The group acted as a forum for constructivist ideas in Britain.

In the 1950s and 1960s whilst producing works and exhibiting, Adams also taught at the Central School of Art.

After many visits to Cornwall, Adams became a member of the Penwith Society in St Ives in 1975.

Among his later public works was the large steel sculpture for Kingswell in Hampstead in 1973.


  • Gimple Fils 1951
  • Venice Biennale 1962
  • Retrospective Campden Academy 1971
  • Northampton 1971
  • Liverpool Tate 1982
  • Gimple Fils, late Bronzes, 1988

Related Departments

Robert Adams (1917-1984) Related Lots

Lot FS18/331

Lot FS18/331: Robert Adams [1917-1984] - 'Pen(With?) Forms'

Robert Adams [1917-1984] - 'Pen(with?) Forms' - signed and dated Adams 1955 on base further inscribed with title and dated 1955 on a label attached to the base slate sculpture 13.25cm high.

Estimate: £1,500 - £2,000
Realised: £15,000

Lot FS18/328

Lot FS18/328: Robert Adams [1917-1984] - Forms

Robert Adams [1917-1984] - Forms etching, signed and dated R Adams '55 and numbered 5 of 55in pencil in the margin sight size 29.75 x 975cm.

Estimate: £150 - £250
Realised: £380