Interactive Tour of Perry Green

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Henry Moore, Woman

3

Woman in Spring

photo: Jennifer Harrison

1957-58
LH 439
bronze edition of 8+1
cast: Hermann Noack, Berlin
height 152.4cm
signature: stamped Moore [3/8]
The British Council: purchased 1960

This female figure, seated on a solid but low block base for support, has her cloth-bound knees forced upwards by the pose. This harks back to the draped legs of the Northampton Madonna (LH 226), begun in 1943, but the device is traceable to the draperies of the Shelter drawings made in the London Underground in 1941 and 1942, and even earlier to sketches of the artist's mother. Moore was clearly fascinated by the tension and mystery suggested by this kind of loose clothing, but here the breasts of the figure are left bare in extension of a large and swollen abdomen, creating a counterpoint of unmistakable fecundity. Their detached uprightness recalls the reclining figures of the early 1930s, and the pinched head of the figure is not unlike the studies for Head of Queen of 1952.