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Reading Museum | by mikepeckettimages
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Reading Museum

The Embrace 1924 -1933

Robert Gibbings (1889- 1958)

Portland Stone.

 

This sculpture had been at some point given to the owner of the Hinds Head pub at Bray. It had last been seen about 20 years previously in the kitchen garden. Martin Andrews an expert on Robert Gibbings went out with a friend in search for it. They couldn't find it anywhere and were disappointedly going back to the car when across a field in a ditch they saw a glint of something. "When we got close, there, abandoned and lost was the famous sculpture. They got permission from the landlord to remove it for inspection with the deal that they put it back. Sometime later he offered it for sale,and with the help of the V.&A and Reading Museum they purchased it.

From an audio clip by Martin Andrews.

 

The artist Robert Gibbings wrote of this low relief sculpture; 'the first piece that i ever touched with chisel came from the Portland quarries,a slab some four feet square and about six inches thick, It was to be a low relief,,,,, It began with a photograph that i saw in the souvenir programme of a paris music hall-two girls dancing, their arms interlocked to make a geometric pattern. From that,with the substitution of male figure for on of the dancers,a composition of more virile implication evolved on paper.' Gibbings was principally an engraver and fine printer. He worked with the artist Eric Gill,who taught him how to carve in stone.

 

The Sculpture is in the Window gallery .This part of the Museum was originally built to house the Reading School of Art.

  

Lumix DMC LX3 ACDSee Pro 4

  

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Taken on February 11, 2012