Lot 6
  • 6

Henry Moore

2,000,000 - 3,000,000 USD
bidding is closed


  • Henry Moore
  • Reclining figure no. 7
  • Inscribed with the signature Moore, stamped with the foundry mark H. Noack Berlin and numbered 8/9
  • Bronze
  • Length: 39 3/8 in.
  • 100 cm


Private Collection

Jeffrey Loria, New York

Acquired from the above circa 1980-82


David Mitchinson, Henry Moore: Sculpture, London, 1981, no. 618, illustration of another cast p. 296

Alan Bowness, ed., Henry Moore, Sculpture and Drawings, vol. 5, London, 1983, no. 752, illustrations of other casts pls. 158-61

Henry Moore, The Reclining Figure (exhibition catalogue), Columbus Museum of Art ,1984, illustration of another cast p. 102

Catalogue Note

Moore's reclining figures are among his most celebrated and spatially sophisticated works.  Beginning in the 1920s and until the end of his life he would continually rework the motif, repositioning, dividing and in some cases abstracting the body so that only its elemental nature remained intact.  The present work dates from the height of his career, when he had mastered the most technically complex expressions of this form.  Moore himself described the progression of his sculpture as "becoming less representational, less outwardly a visual copy, and so what some people would call more abstract; but only because in this way I can present the human psychological context of my work with the greatest clearness and intensity" (quoted in F. S. Wight, ed., "Henry Moore: The Reclining Figure," The Columbus Museum Exhibition Catalogue, 1984, p. 131).

Moore's preference for the reclining figure as a subject of his sculpture is well-documented.  In interviews he explained his predilection for this form, and the spatial challenges that it presented for him.   One of his most succinct explanations was published in his self-titled monograph in the final years of his life:  "There are three fundamental poses of the human figure.  One is standing, the other is seated, and the third is lying down....  But of the three poses, the reclining figure gives the most freedom, compositionally and spatially.  The seated figure has to have something to sit on.  You can't free it from its pedestal.  A reclining figure can recline on any surface.  It is free and stable at the same time.  It fits in with my belief that sculpture should be permanent, should last for eternity.  Also, it has repose.  And it suits me ─ if you know what I mean."  (quoted in Henry Moore, The Reclining Figure, Columbus Museum of Art (exhibition catalogue), 1984, p. 26).

Sir Kenneth Clark, whose definitive essays on Michelangelo and the Italian Renaissance have become legendary in the field of art history, recognized Moore as the great visionary of European sculpture.  "The popular conception of Moore as the master of the reclining figure is correct.  His vertical motifs, the internal/external forms and agonized columns, marvellous as they are, have been episodes.  The reclining figure had reappeared at every phase of his work, and in the last few years has been the basis of his greatest sculpture." (K.Clark, quoted in Henry Moore, The Reclining Figure, Columbus Museum of Art (exhibition catalogue), 1984, p. 4).

The present bronze is the eighth in a numbered edition of nine, plus one artist's proof.