Suckling Child 1930 ( LH 96)


length 19.7cm

I began believing in direct stone carving, in being true to the material by not making stone look like flesh or making wood behave like metal. This is the tenet that I took over from sculptors like Brancusi and Modigliani. It made me hesitate to make the material do what I wanted until I began to realise this was a limitation in sculpture so that often the forms were all buried inside each other and heads were given no necks. As a result you will find that in some of my early work there is no neck simply because I was frightened to weaken the stone. Out of an exaggerated respect for the material, I was reducing the power of the form.

Henry Moore quoted in Henry Spencer Moore, photographed and edited by John Hedgecoe, words by Henry Moore, Nelson, London; Simon and Schuster, New York 1968, p.45

● In addition to Suckling Child several drawings and the sculpture Helmet Head and Shoulders 1952 (LH 304) by Henry Moore can be found in the Pallant House Gallery’s collection. Please contact the venue for further information.