HENRY MOORE GIFT TO WAKEFIELD IN NEW EXHIBITION
Lithographs and etchings gifted by Barbara Hepworth’s contemporary, Henry Moore to Wakefield, have gone on display in a new temporary exhibition at Yorkshire’s award winning gallery.
Until Sunday 22 April, visitors to The Hepworth Wakefield will be able to see Henry Moore’s Stones, a display of two series of prints, The Stonehenge Suite, 1971/1973, from Wakefield’s Permanent Art Collection and The Dante Stones, 1977, on loan from The Henry Moore Foundation.
Among the first to see the prints was local artist Cynthia Kenny. THW member and Trustee for The Friends of Wakefield Art Galleries & Museums (Wakefield Permanent Art Fund), Cynthia Kenny has a particularly close connection to the display.
She recalled: “Realising that the Wakefield Permanent Art Collection did not include any distinguished prints by Henry Moore, it was decided that The Friends of Wakefield Museums & Galleries would appropriate Moore’s Fallen Giant (Plate VI). Around that time Henry Moore was the President of The Wakefield Permanent Art Fund (Friends of Wakefield Art Galleries & Museums) and when he discovered that members were trying to raise funds to purchase Fallen Giant (Plate VI) for £400, he presented the entire Stonehenge Suite to Wakefield Art Gallery.”
Cynthia Kenny continued: “Henry Moore travelled by car to Wakefield Art Gallery to deliver the works himself to Gillian Spencer, the Director. Henry Moore told her that he had been “greatly moved” to learn of the fundraising and was delighted to give Stonehenge Suite to Wakefield.”
As part of The Friends of Wakefield Art Galleries & Museums (Wakefield Permanent Art Fund) Cynthia Kenny was among the group of art enthusiasts whose determined fundraising skills and enthusiasm helped to secure acquisitions that have enhanced Wakefield’s Permanent Art Collection.
Simon Wallis, Director of The Hepworth Wakefield commented: “It’s wonderful to hear how these prints entered the collection, and exemplifies the importance of philanthropy to galleries and their collections. At The Hepworth Wakefield we have a fantastic collection of over 5,000 works and are preparing for a significant changeover of our displays in May, to coincide with our first birthday and Queen’s Silver Jubilee.”
In addition to Henry Moore’s Stones, visitors will be able to enjoy a new hands-on experience with Henry Moore’s bronze, Two Part Reclining Figure No. 4, 1962, from the Wakefield Permanent Art Collection. Using conservation gloves provided by the gallery, visitors can explore Moore’s sculpture through touch. The new display replaces the globe-trotting Reclining Figure, 1936, which is currently on display at Tate Britain in London for the Picasso and Modern British Art exhibition until 15 July.