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Henry Moore

Head of a Woman

1898 – 1986

Head of a Woman
22 x 15.7 x 27 cm
Presented by Wakefield Permanent Art Fund, Friends of Wakefield Art Gallery and Mr A. A. Haley, 1947 © Reproduced by permission of The Henry Moore Foundation. Photography Norman Taylor


This is one of a number of masks, heads and figures that Moore cast from concrete in the 1920s, their surfaces retaining the material’s natural pock-marked grain. The ancient non-Western roots of Moore’s sculptural forms are offset by his choice of an unconventional and very modern medium.

At this time, concrete was a new material for architecture and Moore was one of the first to exploit its artistic potential. The dark greys of concrete are decidedly unclassical, isolating these works from the unblemished whiteness of marble favoured by many of Moore’s modernist peers.