More statues, sculpture, monuments and memorials in the
City of London
A lady once asked me if I knew who this statue represents. High up on a conical roof. A female figure in a long dress holding a snake in her right hand and a skull in the left. I could find no mention of it anywhere. I even made enquiries at the bank and a lady delved into the deeds.
Now (2020) during a site update, after 15 years I have found the answer!
The building was originally occupied by an assurance company and this unnamed artwork was their coat of arms. Here is an excerpt from
The Book of Public Arms:
"METROPOLITAN LIFE ASSURANCE SOCIETY (London). (Established
1835.) Or, on a mount vert, a female figure proper, vested argent, mantle azure, the right arm extended and entwined by a serpent, holding in the left hand a human skull, both also proper…
Motto — "True faith, true policy."
[Granted, College of Arms, August 18, 1885.]".
Today I even walked to Moorgate to get a better shot of the high statue than the original low resolution one.
I wish I could let that lady know now!
A bronze Shepherd and Sheep by Dame Elisabeth Frink can be found at the North end of Paternoster Square. The reason it is here, I believe, is that the square was a livestock market in ancient times. The statue was commissioned for the previous Paternoster Square complex in 1975 and was replaced on a new plinth following the redevelopment.
Upon entering the square and seeing this column for the first time, It looks very much like a small version of The Monument to the Great Fire. It is in fact, a fountain below a stone column topped by a gold leaf covered flaming copper urn, illuminated by fibre-
On the corner of Lawrence Poultney Hill and Cannon Street this work can be seen recessed into the corner of the building there. The plaque gives the following information about the work: “Break the walls of distrust. Commissioned by Speyhawk PLC October 1989. Unveiled by The Right Hon. Richard Luce MP Minister for the arts on 17th. May 1990. A work by Zurab Tsereteu people’s artist of the USSR”.
Around the corner from Saint Paul’s Cathedral, in King Edward Street, you will find this imposing figure. Sir Rowland Hill, normally credited as being the founder of the modern postal service and it’s penny black stamp. Designed in 1881 by artist Edward Onslo Ford, it was unveiled outside the National Postal Museum in 1923. He was originally from Kidderminster.
This giant piece of sculpture by Thomas Heatherwick can be seen in Bishops Court, an area leading off Paternoster Square. It is quite a large functional piece. It is actually a cooling vent for the electrical transformers, and replaces a plain concrete vent. It has been likened to an angel's wings.
Bellerophon Taming Pegasus, to give it’s full name, by Jaques Lipchitz (1891 -
This figure by Vivien Mallock represents the Barge Master at the ceremony known as “Swan Upping” held annually on the river Thames. The Queens swans are counted by members of the Vintners, and the Dyers livery companies. It stands near the church of St. James Garlickhythe and was commissioned by the Worshipful Company of Vintners.
This memorial entitled ‘Blitz’ was unveiled on May 4th. 1991 by The Queen Mother in Sermon Lane. Churchill referred to them as ‘Heroes with grimy faces’. Sculpted by John W. Mill. Originally it commemorated those who died fighting fires in the City during WWII. A section was added to the base and it was made the national monument. The typeface used is the same as that used on wartime ration books.
This interesting bronze sculpture depicting a crouching gardener is another by Karin Jonzen and has been sited in various places in the City over the years. Its current location at the time of writing is in the Brewers Hall Garden near London Wall.
Commissioned by the City Corporation, this monument, designed by Horace Jones replaced the original Temple bar that separated the City of London from the City of Westminster. It was unveiled in 1880. Although designed by Jones, the actual sculptors were Joseph Edgar Boehm, Charles Mabey, Charles Kelsey and Charles Birch. There are many features to the monument, too numerous to mention here.
This sculpture by Wilfred Dudeney was originally sited in New Street Square,near Fleet Street, but when the newspapers left and the developers arrived it found it's way to a demolition yard. It was discovered there and moved to the Goldsmiths Hall Garden in 2009. It represents aspects of newspaper-
If you stand facing the front of Saint Pauls Cathedral you will have a row of shops on your left. Look at the columns supporting the roof of the walkway and on the top of five of them you will see faces carved into them. These are Angel heads. They were sculpted by Emily Young and named Angel V. They were commissioned by Standard life Investments and unveiled in 2003.
This bronze sculpture of Saint George can be seen in the courtyard of KPMG in Dorset Rise. It has a dragon coiled around it's metal plinth and the four brass tongues are fountain heads projecting into a small pool below. Sculpted by Michael Sandle in 1988 and commissioned by the Mountleigh Group.
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