Henry Moore’s Bronze Form and Large Figure in a Shelter: Interpreting the original surface

Katrina Posner


Henry Moore’s final two sculptural series—Bronze Form and Large Figure in a Shelter—were fabricated in 1985-6 by welding together cast-bronze elements. The abstract shapes were likely polished to a high shine after assembly to give a uniform golden appearance. Many of these sculptures, which are now installed throughout the world, have undergone restoration treatments that have addressed the environmental impact on such fragile surfaces – darkening and modulation of the bright color. As it is likely that Henry Moore did not see the completed sculptures in these series before he died, to what aesthetic should the modern conservator refer? This paper will look into the history and context of these sculptures as well as investigate the process for determining their future treatment.

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2010 | Milwaukee | Volume 17