Room 4: Modernism
Drawing formed an important part of Moore’s practice. It gave him a rapid means of generating and developing multiple ideas for sculpture, itself of necessity a slow form of expression. As the 1930s progressed Moore produced a number of drawings that envisaged his sculpture in landscape settings. His Recumbent Figure 1938 is one such sculpture in Hornton stone that Moore realised, siting it out of doors in the countryside. Other drawings depict Moore’s ‘stringed’ sculptures of the period, confined within ambiguous, prison-like spaces pervaded by a sense of the Uncanny. The tautness of the rows of wire and string that stretch across the sculptures – some of which are on display in this room – add a metaphorical dimension to work produced during a time of political unease. The Helmet, one of the last sculptures Moore completed before the onset of the Second World War, encapsulates this sense of anxiety.