Rocking Chair No. 4

Henry Spencer Moore, 1898 - 1986

Rocking Chair No. 4

Henry Spencer Moore 1898 - 1986


A small sculpture cast in bronze, representing a woman seated in a rocking chair holding a baby above head height. The sculpture can rock back and forth on the chair runners. This playful sculpture conveys the tenderness and joy of an intimate domestic scene. In a few simple curves Henry Moore captures the energy of the moment as a mother leans back in her rocking chair and lifts her trusting baby into the air. Moore has also used line to suggest balance and unity of form, giving the sculpture the quality of a three-dimensional drawing. Although the relationship between mother and child was a recurrent theme in Moore's work, the rocking chair was a novel subject. This is one of a series of small rocking chair figures made by Moore in the early 1950s to entertain his young daughter. A similar sculpture was included in an Arts Council touring exhibition Sculpture in the Home, which promoted the idea that sculpture was not exclusively monumental but could be on a scale to be enjoyed in a domestic interior.

Display Label

Room 3: It’s Good to Talk Curated by the Making Conversation group Making Conversation is a group of people from all walks of life who take part in monthly workshops with artists and gallery staff. Workshops use talking and making around art objects to share and discuss contemporary ideas, concerns or issues. They are open to everyone and are planned with blind and partially sighted people in mind. We wanted to find out whether we could promote this level of conversation in a gallery space every day and we’ve selected sculptures to experiment with how a gallery can best be used to make conversation possible. We’ve also thought about the physical nature of the space itself and how much interpretation we should include. Our choice of sculptures was inspired by conversations about nostalgia, loss, history, politics and religion. We were interested in highly crafted objects and the relationships between sculptures too. Making Conversation workshops include audio description of artworks to support blind and visually impaired people to visualise the artwork. We have found that sighted people also value this closer observation of the work. Audio description by Anne Hornsby. Making Conversation takes place on the last Tuesday of every month, 1-4pm. Each workshop includes an exhibition visit, discussion and art making activities led by artists. All adults are welcome and there is no need to book.

Object Name

Rocking Chair No. 4

Creators Name

Henry Spencer Moore

Date Created


accession number



cast bronze

On Display

[G12] Manchester Art Gallery - Gallery 12 - TEMPORARILY CLOSED
View all


© The Henry Moore Foundation. This image must not be reproduced or altered without prior consent from the Henry Moore Foundation (

Fill out my online form.