Stringed Reclining Figure

Accession Number

Stringed Reclining Figure

Henry Moore

Artist Nationality
British (modern)

Object Creation Date

Medium & Support
bronze and string on wood base

4 11/16 x 12 5/16 x 3 11/16 in. (11.9 x 31.2 x 9.3 cm);4 11/16 x 12 5/16 x 3 11/16 in. (11.9 x 31.2 x 9.3 cm);4 x 10 7/8 x 2 3/8 in. (10.1 x 27.5 x 6 cm);3/4 x 12 5/16 x 3 11/16 in. (1.8 x 31.2 x 9.3 cm)

Credit Line
Bequest of Florence L. Stol

Label copy
March 28, 2009
Moore described himself as being “obsessed” with the reclining figure; he estimated that half of the figures he made since his first in 1924 were recumbent. This particular example dates from a period between 1937 and 1939 when Moore, inspired by mathematical models he saw at London’s Science Museum, experimented with the incorporation of string into his sculpture. The threading of the strings through a central bridge in this fascinating piece calls to mind the form and construction of a stringed instrument, which was a common metaphor for the female body in early twentieth-century modern art, most notably in the paintings of Picasso.

Subject matter
Shows Henry Moore's interest in biomorphic abstraction and the human figure. The melodic and lyrical elements of the form are suggested by the strings running from torso to hip evoking a stringed instrument.

Physical Description
Abstracted human figure reclining on its side. Eight strings resembling the strings of a harp extend from the chest area to the hip.

Primary Object Classification

Primary Object Type
abstract sculpture

Additional Object Classification(s)

Collection Area
Modern and Contemporary

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Abstract (fine arts style)
bronzes (visual works)
figures (representations)
modern and contemporary art
stringed instruments (musical instruments)

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& Author Notes

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