Henry Moore and Krishna Reddy are the two artists who faced quite a changing era in the art industry. The intense artistic alteration that began before 1920 emancipated the work of masters of almost all movements. Many outstanding sculptors of the XX century continued to create images of people, but they were no longer afraid to distort or simplify the forms to achieve an emotional effect. Since the late 1950s, a gradual recognition of modernist sculpture, and new ideas and materials have lost their shocking novelty (Rose 90).
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The creation of abstract metal designs, frequently assembled from individual parts rather than whole-piece caught the attention of many art lovers. From this perspective, it was curious to investigate how the new and much freer expression of thought enabled artists to reveal their perception through technique. The Artist Project allowed analyzing the way Moore and Reddy, the two artists that shared much in common, remained unique in their ways of reflecting their worldview.
Krishna Reddy dwelled upon the artworks Reclining Figure, No. 4, and Reclining Nude. Before reflecting on his perceptions, it is essential to note that the artist studied sculpture with the author of these two artworks in England (“Krishna Reddy” par. 2). Thus, it was of particular interest to evaluate how the two individuals perceived the importance of such domains like technique, background, and material.
Both of them affirmed that sculpture was their true passion and Reddy claimed that Moore’s artworks were true life and movement. Nevertheless, the two artists brought different meanings to their works. For instance, Krishna reflected on the themes that were concerned with the emotional periods of the life of his family. As he claimed in the Artist Project “if we can express ourselves genuinely, it touches: it is universal” (Krishna Reddy on Henry Moore). In the same manner, Moore tried to create a concept not of a single piece of art but of something that carried a deeply personal message that would be close to almost any human.
Reddy believes that it is of particular interest how a sculptor treats and perceives materials. For that reason, he stressed out that Moore was capable of bringing life and movement into his sculptures. Interestingly enough, Reddy is a printmaker as well, and it has always been one of the most crucial areas of his art. In one of the interviews, Reddy was told to be among those unique artists who “treat the plate as a sculpted surface, and intaglio printing as a three-dimensional process” (Anand par. 12). In the same manner, he commented on the Reclining Figure, No. 4 indicating that the figure was not only a form but also a holistic representation of a human body.
It is worth noting that technically and stylistically Krishna Reddy stepped far forward. His approach to the technique and style have made him one of the best artists-engravers in the world. His works are considered perfect specimens of intaglios, in which the author puts a special feeling and the sense of touch in the creation of the elusive connections. Regarding the paintings that were created by the sophisticated modernist, the lattice patterns were performed with unusual texturing. The color combinations that Reddy created in the engravings were a reflection of the contemplative perception of the countless mysteries of nature.
Regarding Moore, it can be assumed that most of the works the artist created for the open space. Most of them were conceived as part of the landscape and were to be perceived in this way. It should be noted that for the artists who sought to update their plastic language, the whole history of modern culture was embodied in the works of Moore. The approach utilized by the historical artist replaced Cubism, Post-cubism, and other geometric styles.
Also, the two artists are united by the fact that their works combine several epochs at once since the entire period of the Western modernism from the late 20’s to the 60’s was opened to them simultaneously, although being quite fragmented. In Moore’s art, there was a line of an abstract and surrealistic sculpture of 30’s and a powerful personality as well. Thus, his works did not allow direct identification with any specific artistic movement. Despite the academic platform that he had, the sculptor relied on nature (Moore 8). Many art critics emphasized that Moore’s works combined the modern language with a deep kinship of ancient archetypes. This synthesis has been particularly relevant to three-dimensional spatial sculpture.
Like Reddy, Moore was not self-taught, but he relied on the basis that was obtained in art colleges. It is worth noting that Moore’s sculptures, as well as engravings by Reddy, carried dialogue (Rose 25). This feature unites the two greatest artists the most.
The openness of the closed sculptural volume into the outer space has a semantic openness. It is intended for future interpretations. By breaking the surface, the art pieces are a breakthrough in a static self-isolation, and the plastic has a vent into the external space (at the same time through the voids and gaps sculpture absorbs its surroundings). This constructive and creative role of the negative means (volume and space) in the tradition of the sculpture of the XX century has been embodied in Moore in the best way.
Similarly, Reddy’s works are open. It is the openness to understanding and interpretation when a mysterious reticence image is, at the same time, the involvement of the viewer in an active dialogue with the product. It assumes the multiplicity of possible ways of understanding. Both artists have a contrast in their works such as art and nature, tradition and innovation, ancient and modern, and intelligence of the unconscious.
The Met historical artwork is directly linked to the artistic experience of Krishna Reddy not only because he used to have similar academic experience with Henry Moore but also because the views and techniques of the historical artist are indeed close to Reddy. The contemporary artist has chosen the two sculptures because of his particular interest and appeal to the openness of shape and their latitude to the viewer’s interpretation. He explained that the truthfulness of these sculptures allowed genuineness. In the same manner, he intended to express content through formal objects when creating his art pieces.
In conclusion, the choice of the contemporary artist revealed his connection and similarity of views with Henry Moore. Both artists tried to reveal the gist of their perceptions through the opportunity of a dialogue with the viewer. Moore explored abstract form, as well as Reddy, did, to ensure every individual could add his or her understanding and imagination to the core intended by the authors. Thus, their art pieces pulsate with energy revealing the artists’ understanding of human nature.
Anand, Kanika. From Contextual Sculpture to the Conceptual: Indian artist Krishna Reddy – Interview. 2016. Web.
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Krishna Reddy. n.d. Web.
Krishna Reddy on Henry Moore. n.d. Web.
Moore, Henry. On Being a Sculptor, Mustang: Tate Publishing, 2013. Print.
Rose, Pauline. Henry Moore in America, New York: I.B.Tauris, 2013. Print.