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Henry Moore Grants introduces annual Exceptional Award

Release date: Friday, 1 February 2019

    Henry Moore Grants introduces annual Exceptional Award, recognising the most inspiring sculptural projects each year.

    The Henry Moore Foundation’s grants programme has supported a diverse range of projects since its inception in 1977, with awards to date totalling over £30 million. The inaugural Exceptional Award recognises two outstanding sculptural projects which were originated by institutions in the UK and the US, giving them additional funds to support more ground breaking work.

    “The Henry Moore Foundation’s new Exceptional Award seeks to recognise amongst our applicants, the organisations and projects that deliver most effectively on our mission to support innovation in the development and study of sculpture. Henry Moore hoped his Foundation would encourage a greater understanding of the subject and we are delighted to have identified two outstanding projects that do that so well.”

    Godfrey Worsdale, Director of the Henry Moore Foundation

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    Storm King Art Center in New York State is recognised for its stellar 2017 exhibition David Smith: The White Sculptures, which marked fifty years since the institution’s seminal acquisition of eight monumental works by the artist, bringing them together in the landscape alongside other rarely seen sculptures. The result was the most comprehensive display of his work to date, exemplifying Storm King’s mission to explore art in nature.

    “We are thrilled that the Henry Moore Foundation chose to honor Storm King Art Center with the inaugural edition of its Exceptional Award. It is an honor to partner with such a prestigious institution, and the funds will go towards supporting our annual exhibitions, as well as our outstanding educational programming, to the benefit of all of our visitors.”

    John Stern, President of Storm King

    Whitechapel Gallery in London’s extraordinary presentation of the work of Eduardo Paolozzi, also in 2017, is the second project to be recognised. This major retrospective spanned five decades and featured some 250 works, juxtaposing a dazzling array of works from concrete and bronze sculptures to screen prints, collages, bold textiles and fashion designs, showing the ways in which Paolozzi’s practice challenged convention.

    “We are immensely pleased to have received the Henry Moore Foundation’s inaugural award. Whitechapel Gallery’s retrospective of Eduardo Paolozzi (2017) brought together more than 250 works in a landmark exhibition, reassessing the artist’s varied and experimental approach and highlighting the relevance and impact of his work today. The recognition of the exhibition by the Henry Moore Foundation is a great endorsement for Whitechapel Gallery, allowing us to continue creating internationally relevant exhibitions of modern and contemporary art as well as pioneering education and public events programmes.”

    Iwona Blazwick, Director of Whitechapel Gallery

    The Henry Moore Foundation was set up by the artist in 1977 to protect his legacy and also to ‘enhance the public appreciation of sculpture.’ Today the Foundation continues in the spirit of its founder, fostering sculptural projects that change the way the world views sculpture. Henry Moore Grants is perhaps best known for its support of temporary exhibitions, but the scheme also welcomes applications to help facilitate publications, research, acquisitions and conservation.

    Notes to editors

    Henry Moore Grants awards £500,000 annually and in doing so seeks to continue Moore's legacy by supporting sculpture across historical, modern and contemporary registers and funding research that expands the appreciation of sculpture. Applications are assessed four times during the year by the Grants Committee.

    The first grant was awarded following the inaugural Henry Moore Foundation committee meeting on 26 January, 1977, when it was agreed to give £25,000 to advance the British Museum’s Egyptian sculpture gallery project. Since then the programme has supported international excellence in the field of sculpture, in myriad ways, with grants totalling over £30 million.

    The Exceptional Award is worth £20,000 each year and it is hoped this will further enhance the growth and development of sculpture within the recipient venue(s).