Tate Kids



Rock Drill Inspiration




Sir Jacob Epstein, Torso in Metal from ‘The Rock Drill’, 1913-14


Epstein made this sculpture in response to the horror of the First World War. Millions of young men were killed or wounded. People were shocked by the huge scale of destruction caused by tanks and machine guns, the new ‘machines of war’.

Which parts of the sculpture do you think look human and which look like a machine? Do you think the figure comes from the future or the past? Does it remind you of a character from a book or a film? If it came to life what noise do you think it would make?