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Henry Moore

Late Large Forms

May 31–August 18, 2012
Britannia Street, London

Installation view, photo by Mike Bruce Reproduced by permission of The Henry Moore Foundation

Installation view, photo by Mike Bruce

Reproduced by permission of The Henry Moore Foundation

Installation view Photo by Mike Bruce Reproduced by permission of The Henry Moore Foundation

Installation view Photo by Mike Bruce

Reproduced by permission of The Henry Moore Foundation

Installation view Photo by Mike Bruce Reproduced by permission of The Henry Moore Foundation

Installation view Photo by Mike Bruce

Reproduced by permission of The Henry Moore Foundation

Installation view Photo by Mike Bruce Reproduced by permission of The Henry Moore Foundation

Installation view Photo by Mike Bruce

Reproduced by permission of The Henry Moore Foundation

Works Exhibited

Henry Moore, Large Two Forms, 1966 (view 1) Bronze, 141 11/16 × 240 3/16 × 171 5/16 inches (360 × 610 × 435 cm), edition of 4Photo by Mike Bruce, reproduced by permission of The Henry Moore Foundation

Henry Moore, Large Two Forms, 1966 (view 1)

Bronze, 141 11/16 × 240 3/16 × 171 5/16 inches (360 × 610 × 435 cm), edition of 4
Photo by Mike Bruce, reproduced by permission of The Henry Moore Foundation

Henry Moore, Large Two Forms, 1966 (view 2) Bronze, 141 11/16 × 240 3/16 × 171 5/16 inches (360 × 610 × 435 cm), edition of 4Photo by Mike Bruce, reproduced by permission of The Henry Moore Foundation

Henry Moore, Large Two Forms, 1966 (view 2)

Bronze, 141 11/16 × 240 3/16 × 171 5/16 inches (360 × 610 × 435 cm), edition of 4
Photo by Mike Bruce, reproduced by permission of The Henry Moore Foundation

Henry Moore, Reclining Figure: Hand, 1979 (view 1) Bronze, 64 ⅝ × 90 ⅝ × 52 inches (164 × 230 × 132 cm), edition of 9Photo by Mike Bruce, reproduced by permission of The Henry Moore Foundation

Henry Moore, Reclining Figure: Hand, 1979 (view 1)

Bronze, 64 ⅝ × 90 ⅝ × 52 inches (164 × 230 × 132 cm), edition of 9
Photo by Mike Bruce, reproduced by permission of The Henry Moore Foundation

Henry Moore, Reclining Figure: Hand, 1979 (view 2) Bronze, 64 ⅝ × 90 ⅝ × 52 inches (164 × 230 × 132 cm), edition of 9Photo by Mike Bruce, reproduced by permission of The Henry Moore Foundation

Henry Moore, Reclining Figure: Hand, 1979 (view 2)

Bronze, 64 ⅝ × 90 ⅝ × 52 inches (164 × 230 × 132 cm), edition of 9
Photo by Mike Bruce, reproduced by permission of The Henry Moore Foundation

Henry Moore, Seated Woman: Thin Neck, 1961 Bronze, 64 × 31 ½ × 40 ⅝ inches (162.6 × 80 × 103 cm), edition of 7Photo by Mike Bruce, reproduced by permission of The Henry Moore Foundation

Henry Moore, Seated Woman: Thin Neck, 1961

Bronze, 64 × 31 ½ × 40 ⅝ inches (162.6 × 80 × 103 cm), edition of 7
Photo by Mike Bruce, reproduced by permission of The Henry Moore Foundation

About

Everything I do, I intend to make on a large scale... Size itself has its own impact, and physically we can relate ourselves more strongly to a big sculpture than to a small one.
—Henry Moore

Gagosian Gallery, in collaboration with The Henry Moore Foundation, is pleased to present a major exhibition of large-scale sculptures by Henry Moore, some of which are being presented indoors for the first time.

Moore’s oeuvre, emblematic of modern British sculpture, is informed by elements of the abstract, the surreal, the primitive, and the classical. His rolling corporeal forms are as accessible and familiar as they are distinctly avant-garde. Moore’s first solo sculpture exhibition was held in London in 1928; by the late 1940s he had become one of Britain’s most celebrated artists with a diverse oeuvre that encompassed drawings, graphics, textiles, and sculpture. In the following decades he continued to receive increasingly significant sculpture commissions, following a major retrospective at the Museum of Modern Art in New York in 1946 and winning the international prize at the Venice Biennale in 1948. His heightened success and fame provided him with the means to work increasingly in bronze rather than direct carving, thus achieving the monumental scale that he had always desired for his work. His large-scale sculptures have been placed in indoor and outdoor environments all over the world including Kenwood House, London; Dallas City Hall Plaza; Tiergarten, Berlin; the University of Chicago; Exchange Square, Hong Kong; UNESCO headquarters, Paris; Lincoln Center, New York; The National Gallery of Art, Washington DC; the United Nations Headquarters, New York; the Houses of Parliament, London; St Paul’s Cathedral, London; and the City Museum of Contemporary Art, Hiroshima.

Moore’s large-scale sculptures celebrated the beauty and power of organic forms at a time when traditional representation was largely eschewed by the vanguard art establishment. Their prodigious size and forceful presence have an overwhelming physicality that promotes a charged relation between sculpture, site, and viewer. In Two Piece Reclining Figure No. 2 (1960) the rough texture of the patinated dark surface infuses the large corpus with a certain brutalism, the stunted head and blocky limbs akin to arched geological formations, weathered from time immemorial. Reclining Figure: Hand (1979) is immediately identifiable as a human form despite its modulated stylization; the softly rounded, cloud-like body attests to Moore’s more exploratory impulses when compared to Large Four Piece Reclining Figure (1972–73) and Reclining Connected Forms (1969), where he alludes to body parts using the vocabulary of mechanical components. Large Two Forms (1966) and Large Spindle Piece (1974) evidence an interest in both natural and man-made objects.

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