Henry Moore: The Artist and his Patron
[ Exhibition )
A free display revealing the important relationship between Henry Moore and his patron Walter Hussey.
From his first glimpse of Henry Moore’s (1898 – 1986) sketches of fearful Londoner’s sheltering from the Blitz, Walter Hussey (1909-1985) sensed a “dignity and force” in Moore’s art. Captivated, the then rector of St Matthew’s, Northampton commissioned Moore’s Madonna and Child (1944) for his church and later on, as Dean of Chichester Cathedral continued to support and collect the artist’s work.
Our first exhibition to explore Hussey’s patronage of Henry Moore reveals the important relationship between the two men. It has its complexities – Moore was ambivalent about theology – but they shared a vision and Hussey withstood criticism from traditionalists who disliked the radical work. On view will be maquettes and sketches showing the evolution of the work alongside the men’s correspondence about the commission, press cuttings and archive photographs.
The exhibition captures key moments in Henry Moore’s career including his Surrealist drawings, his drawings of wartime shelters and mines in the pits of Yorkshire; his 1940s lithographs and his late work including the magnificent and mysterious Elephant Skull album (1970).
Through the display of other works bequeathed by collectors Charles Kearley, Brenda Rawnsley, and David Medd, the exhibition will provide an insight into how Moore was collected and supported in the 20th century.
Listen to historian Dr Peter Webster explore Walter Hussey’s commission of Henry Moore’s Madonna and Child and its significance in the development of Hussey’s patronage.