Working Model for Three Way Piece No.1: Points
1964, cast c.1964–9
652 x 712 x 743 mm
Inscribed ‘Moore’ and ‘0/7’ on side of base
Artist’s copy aside from edition of 7
Presented by the artist 1978
Technique and condition
After the sculpture had been cast and treated a dark brown artificial patina was applied to certain areas of the bronze surface (fig.2). The chemical solution used to create the patina was probably potassium polysulphide (known in foundries as ‘liver of sulphur’). It was stippled onto the recessed surfaces of the form with a brush, giving these areas a mottled appearance. The bronze was probably heated with a blowtorch as the patina was applied, which served to darken the eventual colour. A similar colour was used on the base but this was applied more evenly. The sculpture has been finished with a coat of lacquer that displays a slightly yellow tint, giving an almost golden colour to the polished bronze.
The smoothly cast, hollow bronze base is 50 mm deep and 7 mm thick. Vertical strip supports in its underside provide additional structural strength while traces of sand in its crevices indicate that the base was sand cast. The sculpture is attached to it by bolts at two of its three points. The third and finest of these points rests in a small recess with no fixings to hold it in place. The artist’s signature, ‘Moore’, is inscribed on the side of the base alongside the edition number ‘0/7’ (fig.3). The foundry mark ‘H.NOACK BERLIN’ is stamped on one of the sculpture’s lower edges where it meets the base (fig.4).
How to citeLyndsey Morgan, 'Technique and Condition', March 2011, in Alice Correia, ‘Working Model for Three Way Piece No.1: Points 1964, cast c.1964–9 by Henry Moore OM, CH’, catalogue entry, October 2013, in Henry Moore: Sculptural Process and Public Identity, Tate Research Publication, 2015, https://www
One of the two rounded legs curves up smoothly towards an elliptical form defined by sharp edges that juts out prominently at an angle (fig.2). In contrast, the second of these legs rises up vertically towards a rounded ridge that extends down and outwards to create a thin, overhanging fin-like form. Behind this, a similar wedge-shaped protrusion emerges from the apex of the ridge, separated from the overhanging fin by a concave curve (fig.3). The third, sharper point on which the sculpture rests extends from a more distinct, highly polished curved form that loosely resembles the shape of a canine tooth. It is connected to the other side of the sculpture by a bridge of bronze that stretches over the central arch (fig.4).
Once it was complete Moore would have used the plaster maquette as a template for Working Model for Three Way Piece No.1: Points. By systematically charting and measuring specific points on the surface of the maquette it was possible to enlarge the design while retaining its proportions. This scaling-up process was probably carried out in the White Studio at Hoglands by one of Moore’s assistants, who in 1964 were Geoffrey Greetham, Robert Holding, Derek Howarth, Roland Piché, Ron Robertson-Swann, Hylton Stockwell and Yeheskiel Yardini. After calculating the measurements of the enlarged sculpture, a wooden armature was made to the required size and shape (fig.7). Each rod was precisely measured so that its outward-facing end corresponded with a ‘landmark’ or specific point on the surface of the sculpture as measured from the maquette.5 Moore could allocate the bulk of the enlargement work to his assistants because, as curator Julie Summers has noted, it was ‘a scientific rather than artistic process’.6
Once the wooden armature was constructed it was then draped in scrim, a bandage-like fabric (fig.8). Layers of plaster were then applied on top to achieve the final form. It was at this point that Moore began to work into the plaster surface, using an array of tools including chisels, files and sandpaper. These tools could be used to produce a variety of textures depending on the consistency of the plaster as it dried (fig.9), which were in turn reproduced in the cast bronze. In 1977 the curator Alan Bowness noted that ‘most of the post-war bronzes had rough, variegated textures, but from 1963 or so Moore began to introduce smooth and polished bronze surfaces’, as seen in this work.7
In 1973 the critic John Russell accounted for the tactile sensibility of Moore’s work of the later 1960s with reference to the sculptor’s renewed engagement with stone carving. Having spent most of the 1940s and 1950s sculpting in plaster that was subsequently cast in bronze, in the mid-1960s Moore began to carve a number of sculptures in marble, such as Upright Form: Knife Edge 1966 (Tate T01172; fig.15). In 1965 Moore bought a home at Forte dei Marmi, Italy, close to the Carrara marble quarries, and henceforth spent two or three months each summer in Italy, where he spent his time relaxing but also carving. Russell suggested that Moore’s annual trips to Italy and his re-engagement with stone carving inevitably informed the work he made to be cast in bronze, stating, ‘I do not believe that it was coincidence that led him, from 1962 onwards, to concentrate more and more on surfaces that were smooth and unbroken and edges that were sharp and clean’.24 For Russell, many works of the mid-1960s ‘looked as if their basic forms had been decided with hammer and chisel’.25 The first of what may be classified as Moore’s late marble works, Two Forms (private collection), was made in 1964, the same year as Working Model for Three Way Piece No.1: Points. With its smooth faces and clean edges, the bronze could be regarded as a transitional work that anticipating the carved, flawless surfaces of his marble sculptures.
Early exhibitions and reviews
The Henry Moore Gift
How to cite
Alice Correia, ‘Working Model for Three Way Piece No.1: Points 1964, cast c.1964–9 by Henry Moore OM, CH’, catalogue entry, October 2013, in Henry Moore: Sculptural Process and Public Identity, Tate Research Publication, 2015, https://www