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Discover & Research

Brâncuşi and Britain

Spring & Summer 2024

This research season encourages scholars and practising artists to reconsider Constantin Brâncuşi (1876-1957) and his impact amongst British artists, writers, and thinkers.

Black and white vintage photo showing three older men stood in a gallery. Hung on the walls behind them are lots of paintings in fancy frames. The men are dressed in suits, two wear hats, and one holds a walking stick. One is smoking a pipe, and the other two are holding cigarettes.

About this season

As the Centre Pompidou prepares for an ambitious new exhibition of work by Constantin Brâncuşi (1876-1957), the Henry Moore Foundation is hosting a series of events aimed at re-examining the artist’s relationship with Britain, as well as his ongoing influence upon contemporary sculpture.

Brâncuşi is one of the most influential artists of the twentieth century. He was born in the small village of Hobiţa, studied art in Craiova and Bucharest, before leaving his native Romania for Paris in 1904, where he joined the École des Beaux Arts. He remained in Paris, where his sculptural practice flourished and garnered vast acclaim, until his death in 1957.

This Research Season will encourage emerging and established scholars, and practising artists to reconsider Brâncuşi, his period, and his impact amongst British artists, writers, and thinkers.

We want to pose new questions of how artists working today can respond to and challenge Brâncuşi’s legacy, with the aim of revealing fresh insights into his significance within twenty-first-century popular and academic discourses.

As well as using a variety of theoretical and methodological approaches to his life and work, we will consider his exhibition history in Britain and abroad, the complicated reception of his work in Britain, and wider cross-cultural exchanges between Romania, France, and Britain.

This research season has been conceived and organised in collaboration with Dr Alexandra Parigoris (University of Leeds) and Dr Jonathan Vernon (independent).

Events in this season

Modern Sculpture, Essence, and Difference: Reflections on the Work of Constantin Brâncuşi
Abstract image composed of layered, stone-textured shapes on a green background.
Part of Brâncuşi and Britain
Part of Brâncuşi and Britain

Early career research symposium

Modern Sculpture, Essence, and Difference: Reflections on the Work of Constantin Brâncuşi

11:00–19:30

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The Courtauld Institute of Art, London, UK
Hannah Hughes and Lucy Skaer in conversation
Composite image of work by Hannah Hughes and Lucy Skaer. Left: Abstract image composed of layered, stone-textured shapes on a yellow background. Right: Around 20 identical tall, slender black sculptures are clustered together on a wooden gallery floor. Behind them, some abstract prints are hung on the white wall.
Part of Brâncuşi and Britain
Part of Brâncuşi and Britain

Artist in conversation

Hannah Hughes and Lucy Skaer in conversation

The Courtauld Institute of Art, London, UK
Ariane Coulondre and Matthew Gale
Side by side portrait photos of Ariane Coulondre and Matthew Gale.
Part of Brâncuşi and Britain
Part of Brâncuşi and Britain

Curatorial discussion

Ariane Coulondre and Matthew Gale

18:00–19:00

Book your free ticket

Online
Brâncuşi, Britain and the Idea of Modern Sculpture
Black and white photo of five older men wearing suits. Henry Moore, Frank McEwan, Herbert Read and Paul Eluard stand to the right, with Constantin Brâncuşi to the left. He has a large beard and holds a hat in his hands.
Part of Brâncuşi and Britain
Part of Brâncuşi and Britain

Conference

Brâncuşi, Britain and the Idea of Modern Sculpture

Book Now

Studios & Gardens, Hertfordshire

Reading list

The Henry Moore Institute’s Sculpture Research Library in Leeds offers unparalleled access to material on sculpture.

Download reading list (PDF, 0.5mb)

Books available in the library

Books available in the library

Further reading

Further reading

Additional resources

Additional resources