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Sweeping visitor centre celebrating the life and work of Henry Moore opens on the sculptor's former estate

To celebrate its 40th anniversary, the foundation of iconic British sculptor Henry Moore has opened a new visitor centre and archive dedicated to his work.

The Henry Moore Foundation was founded in 1977 to encourage public appreciation of the artist’s work and to support emerging talent. In the last four decades it has awarded over 2,000 grant awards totaling £31m (US$39.7m, €36.4m).

To mark its birthday, the organisation has upgraded its sculpture garden attraction in the Hertfordshire hamlet of Perry Green. A new building, designed by Hugh Broughton Architects, provides an interpretation space for education and events and also features meeting rooms, a shop, a cafe and working spaces for the foundation's staff.

The architects have designed a grey stained sweet chestnut and glass pavilion, which wraps around the north, east and south sides of the estate and overlooks the gardens, doubling up with a sweeping curve to create the first floor offices of the curators. The transparent design maximises views of Moore’s bronzes set in the gardens around his Grade II* listed home.

The entire Henry Moore Archive is also being housed under one roof for the first time, with a former residential property on the estate being redeveloped especially for the purpose. It contains an oak reading room; six climate controlled rooms; and a further project space for the digitising, re-housing and conservation of materials.

In a statement, the architects said: "The design of both buildings reinforces the relationship of the visitor with sculpture and landscape. The calm and sensitive architecture is characterised by natural materials, light and space. Details and workmanship reflect the foundation’s commitment to craftsmanship."

In addition to the new facilities, the foundation is celebrating its milestone with a range of new exhibitions and events in Perry Green and another site in Leeds.

The first of these, Becoming Henry Moore, will run until 22 October 2017 and explores Moore’s formative years from 1914 to 1930. Exhibits include his first ever commission – a World War One roll of honour for his secondary school, never seen outside his home town of Castleford – and his famous ‘Reclining Figure’. Work from artists that inspired him are also on display.

Hugh Broughton Architects began working on the project in 2007, and also worked on a wider masterplan for the sculpture park. Their previous leisure and culture projects in the UK include the Maidstone Museum and the redevelopment of Sir Christopher Wren’s Painted Hall in Greenwich, London.

Henry Moore  art  architecture  design  sculpture  m Perry Green  Hugh Broughton Architects 
To celebrate its 40th anniversary, the foundation of iconic British sculptor Henry Moore has opened a new visitor centre and archive dedicated to his work. The Henry Moore Foundation was founded in 1977 to encourage public appreciation of the artist’s work and to support emerging talent. In the last four decades it has awarded over 2,000 grant awards totaling £31m (US$39.7m, €36.4m). To mark its birthday, the organisation has upgraded
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The architects have designed a grey stained sweet chestnut and glass pavilion, which wraps around the north, east and south sides of the estate / Hufton + Crow
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