Henry Spencer Moore was born in 1898 in Castleford in Western Yorkshire. Henry was the seventh of eight children in a family that often struggled with poverty. He attended infant and elementary schools in Castleford, where he began modelling in clay and carving in wood. His interest in sculpting was peaked when he heard of the works of Michelangelo.
He later attended Castleford Grammar School and set out training to be a sculptor despite his parents insistence that he should pursue another career. He sent a short time as a teacher before volunteering for the armed services in World War I. He was injured in a gas attack in France which led to the end of his military career.
After the war he began to focus on his art and sculpting, his work being influenced by the likes of Jacob Epstein, Frank Dobson and Henri Guadier-Brzeska. His work became to gain acclaim after 1924 when he was awarded a scholarship to study in Italy.
Moore’s style has been described as pre-cultural and modernist, many of his works feature reclining out of proportion figures which has become his signature motif in art.
Since he passed away in 1986 almost all modern sculptors have grown up in the vast shadow of his work and have been influenced by his works. He truly is one of the most notable sculptors and artists of the 20th century.