More Moore


Talk about interactive art! We went to the Denver Botanical Gardens on Saturday to see the rest of the Henry Moore statues. (We’d been down to visit the few at the Botanical Gardens’ outpost a couple of months ago). Let me tell you, having these statues in a garden is AWESOME. Wonderful place to exhibit them. We wanted to go before all the flowers had blown — and were waiting for a coolish day. Saturday was not cool but we went early and did fine. frame

Moore’s sculpture is made to be walked around and embraced from all sides. It’s truly interactive! For all but one of the pieces, you could circle them. Walk around them and really experience them. I love his work because it feels joyous and enthusiastic to me. And I love that as you walk around it, it changes. You always see something new–something surprising. And I love the way his work frames the world around it–so you’re not just discovering new things about the piece itself but about the landscape around it. It amazes me that he could see so three-dimensionally.

Quilting is ideal for me because I create two dimensionally. And much though I love sculpture, I cannot conceive of creating a three-dimensional piece. The closest I can get is mobiles. That’s why I love Alexander Calder. Although I also think his stabiles are extraordinary. And Calder, like Moore, created pieces that interact with their environment. You cannot just look at the art; you must, you are forced to look at the world around the art.

I fancy that the sculptures are pretty happy at the Gardens. They must have been concerned during the long voyage over to the U.S. about where they were going. How swell it must have been to have landed in the Rockies with the high mountains around! New heroic vistas for them to frame. And they were up to it — heroic art framing heroic mountains.

Because Moore’s work shows us how to open up our vision. Consider larger pictures.


Plus he is so charmingly whimsical at times. There’s one piece that looks like the most benign totem pole, for want of a better term. It feels benevolent, like a guardian you can trust. Most of his work makes me want to touch it, lean against it, give it a hug. It’s massive but not bullying. It’s generous and outgoing. And definitely very friendly. Like some wonderful tribe of kindly giants who have settled among us here in the Rockies for a year.