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Danny Boyle opposes plan to sell Moore sculpture

Associated Press Modified: November 5, 2012 at 1:46 pm •  Published: November 5, 2012
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LONDON (AP) — Director Danny Boyle has joined leading British arts figures urging a cash-strapped local authority not to sell off a valuable Henry Moore sculpture — arguing it should be erected in London's Olympic Park instead.

"Draped Seated Woman" is owned by London's Tower Hamlets Council and stood for years on a public housing complex in the city's East End.

Last month the council announced plans to sell the bronze artwork to offset funding cuts. Estimates of its value range from 5 million pounds to 20 million pounds ($8 million to $32 million).

Tower Hamlets Mayor Luthur Rahman said the local authority faced a "stark choice" at a time of economic weakness and government austerity.

Moore, who died in 1986, is one of Britain's best-known 20th-century artists, and his curved, semi-abstract forms stand in public spaces around the world.

He sold "Draped Seated Woman" to the now-defunct London County Council in 1960 for a token price so it could enrich the lives of residents in a poor area.

During its years in the East End it became known locally as "Old Flo" and was regularly vandalized.

When the housing project was demolished in the late 1990s, the work was moved to the Yorkshire Sculpture Park in northern England.

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