Britain this spring is hosting two Henry Moore exhibitions. But those expecting a reprise of the shows full of familiar reclining figures in stone or bronze or those other sculptures marked by his signature perforations are in for a surprise. One show focuses on a group of heads that Moore, who was born in 1898 and died in 1986, began producing in the late 1930s. The other looks at his career as a draftsman. As good exhibitions will, each tells us something new about an artist who, at times, can seem all too familiar.

At the Wallace Collection in London, “Henry Moore: The Helmet Heads” juxtaposes a selection of those eponymous works with examples of medieval armor that inspired Moore beginning when he was an art student in London in the early 1920s.

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