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Helaine Blumenfeld

College positions:
Fellow Commoner
Contact details:
Helaine Blumenfeld OBE grew up in New York and studied Moral Philosophy at Columbia University, receiving a PhD in 1964.

She moved to Paris where she studied sculpture with Ossip Zadkine, and had her first solo exhibition in Palais Palfy, Vienna. Most notable recent exhibitions include: Salisbury Cathedral, Pilane Sculpture Park, Huygens Hofwijck Museum, Canary Wharf (2020-22) and Het Depot in the Netherlands.

Best known for her monumental public commissions, Blumenfeld is passionate about bringing sculpture into the public domain, creating works that have become integral to the cultural landscape of the UK. Most notably, Tempesta overlooking Hyde Park in London, installed in 2012 as well as Fortuna (2016) and Metamorphosis (2019) in Canary Wharf and Tree of Life: Encounter installed at the Woolf Institute (Cambridge) in 2018.

Blumenfeld spends her time working in her studios in Grantchester and Pietrasanta, Italy. She is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Sculptors and has served on its council and as its Vice-President. She was the first woman to win the International Sculpture prize Il Premio Pietrasanta e la Versilia nel Mondo. Blumenfeld was awarded an Honorary OBE for services to the arts. She is the subject of the recent Sky Arts film Hard Beauty: The Sculpture of Helaine Blumenfeld. Three monographs have been written about her work.

Select awards

  • Winner of the 2007 Premio Pietrasanta nel Mondo
  • Awarded an honorary OBE in 2011

Further links