Drawing in the Dark
In contrast to Henry Moore’s well-known drawings depicting Londoners sheltering from the Blitz, little has been written about how this son of a Yorkshire coalminer tackled his second commission from the War Artists’ Advisory Committee in 1941; drawing men in ‘Britain’s underground army’, the miners of Wheldale colliery.
Redressing this imbalance, Chris Owen’s comprehensive account of the coalmining drawings explores every aspect of the commission – from Moore’s return to his childhood home and the challenges associated with ‘drawing in the dark’ to the significant influence of the project on Moore’s later work, including the Warrior and Helmet Head sculptures, and his little-known illustrations to W.H. Auden’s poetry.
With illustrations drawn from Moore’s rich body of sketches and finished drawings, along with press photographs recording the commission and a range of contextual material, text and images combine to present the definitive study of this impressive body of work.
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