Seated Figures: Artist & Model, 1940

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The sculptor Henry Moore made drawing a daily practice. He thought of it as a physical exercise and as a way to see more intently. His anonymous, abstracted figures lend a universality to the human form. Around the time he made the present drawing, Moore became an Offical War Artist charged with documenting Britain's home-front efforts in World War II. This led to a series of drawings of people huddling in London's Underground (subway) tunnels. The couple seated at the left may have been in one of the tunnels. The woman protects herself from the cold with a blanket draped over her lap. Could the rectangle containing two sailboats be a travel poster, or is it a window with a true harbor view' Perhaps this scene has nothing to do with the Underground. Such is the challenge of interpreting artists' quick sketches.

The theme of artist and model is unusual in Moore's oeuvre, but he developed the vignette in the right half of this drawing in a larger, more finished drawing (Whitworth Art Gallery, University of Manchester, England).

Seated Figures: Artist & Model
Artist Life
1898 - 1986
Accession Number
Catalogue Raisonne
Henry Moore Foundation Archive, no.1461A
Curator Approved

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