Greenwich locals delighted by return of 20th century masterpiece
An iconic figural sculpture by the late British artist Henry Moore has been restored and reinstated in Greenwich Park, this week. The sculpture which stands at over five metres tall, was transported down to Greenwich Park from the Henry Moore foundation in Perry Green on Tuesday. The work, ‘Large Standing Figure: Knife Edge’, was placed in a prominent position in the park in 1979 but removed for an exhibition in 2007. It was than placed in storage at the Henry Moore Foundation until funds were raised for its restoration. The statue was greatly missed by the regulars to Greenwich Park and many locals lobbied to have it returned. Funds for the sculpture was made possible through joint funding from The Friends of Greenwich Park, The London Organising Committee of the Olympic Games and Paralympic Games (Locog) and The Royal Parks. Colin Buttery, Deputy Chief Executive and Director of Parks, The Royal Parks said this morning: “Without the fantastic local support, the Royal Parks wouldn’t have been able to bring this sculpture back here and the Friends, Locog and the Henry Moore foundation have all worked so hard to make this happen.”
Olympic gold-medalist and Locog board member, Jonathan Edwards, told journalists that “Henry Moore is coming home and as an organising committee, we’re delighted to be able to support the return of the ‘Knife Edge’.”Anita Feldman, Head of Collections and Exhibitions, The Henry Moore Foundation said: “It is wonderful to return the sculpture to the site Moore selected particularly as it will be overlooking London during the Olympic Games. Moore once exhibited a version of this sculpture on a hillside overlooking the Acropolis in Athens – its upraised arm, arched back and tilted hip recall the triumphant gesture and humanism of the ancient Nike of Samonthrace.” The piece will remain in Greenwich for two years but the agreement with the foundation is renewable. Would the Henry Moore Foundation like to see it stay in Greenwich? “Definitely….I think it’s always best if you can have sites that the artist chose,” stated, Ms Feldman of the HMF. Greenwich Park will be an international focus as it hosts the equestrian events during the 2012 Games.
Direct quotes for this article have been extracted from Journalist Rob Powell’s original material for the Greenwich News