cover image Henry Moore

Henry Moore

Rizzoli, David Mitchinson. Rizzoli International Publications, $24.95 (128pp) ISBN 978-0-8478-1559-3

Affording a rounded view of the English sculptor's output and career, this concise, handsomely illustrated survey joins 203 plates (182 in color) with two introductory essays by staff members of the Henry Moore Foundation. Mitchinson briefly reviews the artist's experimentation during the 1930s, when he created delicate stringed figures carved in a variety of woods and ``transformation drawings'' that turned shells, twigs and pebbles into realizable sculptural forms. Stallabrass astutely sifts various critical readings of Moore's work, which has been seen as tragic, humanistic, apocalyptic, inhuman and an embodiment of the Freudian psyche. Beneath the sculpture's surface familiarity he finds ``a set of repressed themes'' centering on masculine aggression, the creative act and the inhuman mechanization of the self. The illustrations range from a graceful, classic Head of the Virgin (1922) to miniatures of the 1930s, the delightful Rocking Chair series, heroic torsos and mother-and-child pairs. (Sept.)