New exhibition at Henry Moore Studios
Entertainment / Sun 16th May 2021 at 08:51am
WHEN lockdown restrictions are lifted from 19 May 2021 visitors will be encouraged to touch the sculptures on show, as part of a new exhibition curated by acclaimed artist and author Edmund de Waal exploring the role of touch and iconography of the hand in Moore’s work.
Edmund de Waal said: “This exhibition was supposed to open in March 2020. In the past year, our hands and our experience of touch have taken on a whole new meaning. To be able to invite people to encounter Moore’s sculptures through touch is now even more extraordinary. Moore believed in the importance of tactile experience in enjoying sculpture, and I hope visitors will enjoy this unique opportunity. In this exhibition we see a life of reflection on how hands become sculpture. And returned to what knowledge our own hands hold.”
To enable visitors to touch the sculptures safely, a special new element has been introduced to the exhibition – stone for two hands and water, a stone washbasin made by Edmund de Waal for visitors to pause and cleanse their hands before entering the gallery. The washbasin takes as its form a Japanese tsukubai, traditionally located at the entrance of places for visitors to purify themselves by the ritual of washing of hands.
The exhibition will also include a series of benches in Horton stone made by Edmund de Waal for visitors to pause and reflect.
Throughout his career Moore emphasised the importance of experiencing sculpture through touch and returned to the hand as a subject in his sculpture and drawings, studying its expressive power and symbolic values as Auguste Rodin and Michelangelo, two of his favourite artists, had done before him.
monumental bronzes King and Queen (1952-53) and Reclining Figure: Hand (1979), to powerful studies Moore made of his own and others’ hands.
Sebastiano Barassi, Head of Collections & Exhibitions at the Henry Moore Foundation, said: “The Henry Moore Foundation is delighted to collaborate with Edmund de Waal on this project, which we believe will have a profound impact on the understanding of Henry Moore’s place in the history of art and highlight his continuing relevance for contemporary practice. The authoritative voice of a world-class artist and author like de Waal will no doubt play an important part in shaping new and original narratives around Moore and introduce fresh ways of looking at his work. Edmund’s wonderful talent for storytelling through objects and his unrivalled visual sensitivity put him in a unique position to curate a visually tantalising show and write eloquently about this most intriguing subject.”
This Living Hand will present a selection of original sculptures and other objects which visitors will be invited to touch, as well as a group of drawings and sculptural works charting Moore’s interest in the hand as a subject, from the
This Living Hand: Edmund de Waal Presents Henry Moore
19 May – 31 October 2021
Henry Moore Studios & Gardens
Perry Green, Hertfordshire SG10 6EE
+44 (0)1279 843 333