SCVA displays letters between Henry Moore and Robert Sainsbury

The University of East Anglia will be displaying previously unseen letters between Henry Moore, one of the most renowned artists of the 20th century, and his patron and friend, Robert Sainsbury.


Moore, famous for his iconic bronze sculptures, had a close friendship with Robert Sainsbury, beginning with Sainsbury’s purchase of Moore’s ‘Mother and Child’ sculpture in 1933. The sculpture was first displayed at the Sainsbury Centre for Visual Arts’ opening in 1978.

The exhibition, entitled ‘Moore in Focus: A Friendship in Letters’ will display their correspondence through letters, photographs and postcards.

The material was sourced from the Sainsbury Research Unit archives and the Henry Moore Foundation.

The deeply personal letters include Moore’s recommendation of a Gillette razor to Sainsbury, where Moore is seen to address Sainsbury as “Dear Bob”. In another letter to Sainsbury, Moore expresses his excitement in preparation for “the opening of your centre in East Anglia”, the Sainsbury Centre for Visual Arts.

Amy Chang, one of the exhibition team, emphasized the close friendship between Moore and Sainsbury: “The letters show clearly how much Henry and Irina and Sir Robert and Lady Sainsbury respected and liked each other and we are delighted to be able to share these never-before-seen snippets of their friendship with the public.

“Their relationship was a cornerstone of the creation of the Sainsbury Centre where we will now try to portray their relationship, and we have some fantastic photographs of Moore and Sir Robert.”

The exhibition runs from April 26 to July 20 at the Sainsbury Centre for Visual Arts, UEA. Free Admission.


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