The Sculptor's Drawing: Henry Moore
Now scheduled to open on 15 January 2021
Release date: Thursday, 15 October 2020
Henry Moore returns to Florence almost fifty years after the unforgettable exhibition at the Forte di Belvedere in 1972. This Autumn the Museo Novecento will to pay homage to Moore with Il Disegno dello Scultore. Henry Moore, an exhibition curated by Sergio Risaliti, Artistic Director of the Museo Novecento and Sebastiano Barassi, Head of Collections and Exhibitions at the Henry Moore Foundation.
The exhibition, organised in collaboration with the Henry Moore Foundation, from November 13, 2020 to May 23, 2021 will see the Florentine museum host a vast selection of drawings, together with graphics and sculptures.
The exhibition explores natural forms; rocks, pebbles, roots and trunks, animals, skulls and their relationship with Moore. Featuring drawings by the artist, the show offers an in depth look at the value of drawing, its practice and its relationship with sculpture.
Henry Moore, Figures in a Cave 1980, charcoal, wax crayon, pencil
Photo: Henry Moore Archive
Henry Moore, The Artist's Hand 1982, carbon line, charcoal (rubbed), ballpoint pen, chinagraph
Photo: Sarah Mercer.
Henry Moore, Tree Trunks and Torso 1984, drawing in charcoal.
Photo: Sarah Mercer.
Henry Moore, Stone Figures in a Landscape Setting 1935, drawing in charcoal, pencil, wax crayon, pastel (rubbed and washed), pen and ink.
Photo: Sarah Mercer.
“The observation of nature is decisive in the life of the artist. Thanks to it also the sculptor enriches his knowledge of form, finds nourishment for his inspiration and maintains the freshness of vision, avoiding crystallization in the repetition of formulas”
The exhibition reinforces Moore's links with Florence, which is still home to monumental works of the artist and hosted, in addition to the Forte di Belvedere exhibition in 1972, an exhibition in the Sala d'Arme of Palazzo Vecchio in 1987. Florence represented a significant and perhaps crucial moment in the formation of Moore's artistic genius, who came to the city for the first time in 1925, during his first study trip to Italy, made possible thanks to a scholarship provided by the Royal College of Art. That was an opportunity to admire and observe the creations of the great masters of the past, including Giotto, Donatello, Masaccio and Michelangelo.
Beginning with an investigation of Henry Moore's relationship with nature and the principles of rhythm and form that underlie it, the show considers themes that move from the relationship between the artist's image and the rocky landscape, and then develop around the study of nature and the mutual mutations between the natural element and the human figure, up to the representation of the primitive form. The attention to the structural force that underlines the different natural conformations, combined with the observation of human anatomy and the surrounding space, is the foundation of a survey of some iconographic motifs recurring in Moore's graphic production. These include landscapes, rocks, trees, animals, monoliths, and the artist's hands.
“The main purpose of my drawings is to help me sculpt. Drawing is in fact a means to generate ideas for sculpture, to extract the initial idea from itself, to organize ideas and to try to develop them...I also use drawing as a method of studying and observing nature (studies of nudes, shells, bones and more). It also happens to me, sometimes, to draw for the sheer pleasure of doing it”
It was time for the city of Florence, the home of humanism in art, to pay homage to Henry Moore, the modern sculptor who, more than any other, was able to interpret and develop the lessons of the great masters of the Renaissance.
“An art that today is even more exemplary than ever because, beyond arguing about its abstractionism or not, you can always feel the presence of man, in its relationship with history and nature, with its torments and its anxieties, with its conflicts and its reconciliations”