Leeds welcomed a second work from one of the most significant sculptors of the 20th Century as Kenneth Armitage’s Legs Walking 2001 was unveiled in City Square today (Tuesday 6 February).
The sculpture, by Leeds born Kenneth Armitage, is the second addition to the city along with Armitage’s Both Arms in Millennium Square, which was inaugurated by Nelson Mandela in 2001.
Legs Walking, the penultimate monumental sculpture made by Kenneth Armitage, is on temporary loan to the city from a private owner and will take pride of place on the footpath adjacent to the Mill Hill Chapel. The work tops five metres in height and is cast of bronze with colour patination.
Councillor Judith Blake, leader of Leeds City Council said;
“Kenneth Armitage was one of the region’s foremost sculptors, and it is fantastic to have a second piece of his art installed in the city centre.
“His Both Arms in Mandela Gardens has proved to be a real talking piece for those visiting the city, and I am sure this piece will prove no different.
“As a city we are proud of our artistic heritage and it is fantastic for this work of art to be on display in a prime location for everyone to see.”
Robert Hiscox, Chairman of the The Kenneth Armitage Foundation said;
“The Kenneth Armitage Foundation is delighted that Legs Walking is now installed in City Square. We are grateful to all who helped bring this about. This generous loan from a private collection is a wonderful finale to last year’s Leed’s Centenary Exhibitions celebrating Armitage’s life and work.”
Note to Editors
Kenneth Armitage was born in 1916 in Leeds and won a scholarship to Leeds College of Art in 1934, where Henry Moore and Barbara Hepworth studied before him. He is known for his semi-abstract bronze pieces, which are recognizably human but are sometimes joined with forms of animals or furniture.
The Centenary of Kenneth Armitage’s birth was in 2016 and as part of this, Leeds held a number of exhibitions to celebrate - when the idea to bring Legs Walking to the city gathered pace