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Public Statues and Sculpture Association

Advancing the Understanding of Public Statues and Sculpture

Caius Gabriel Cibber (1630-1700), Charles II Coming to the Assistance of the City, 1674, Portland stone 5.8 x 5.8 m., Monument to Great Fire of London, Fish St. Hill, London, Grade I. Photo: CC BY-SA-3.0

The Public Statues and Sculpture Association (PSSA) encourages engagement with the many thousands of sculptures in the public domain across the UK, which represent an important part of our shared cultural heritage.

The PSSA is the natural successor to the Public Monuments and Sculpture Association (PMSA), which ran successfully for nearly 30 years. Founded on similar principles, the PSSA will advance the understanding and appreciation of sculpture.

The Association champions the historical, artistic and social context of public statues and sculpture. It is committed to completing and publishing the county by county survey of UK Public Sculpture established by the PMSA. It will record the location and condition of public sculpture, which is vital today and for future generations. The PSSA also promotes education about sculpture, publishing articles, academic papers and specialist books.

Our dynamic social media is building a strong network of students, which will be complemented by a sculpture residency.

We host lively talks, conferences, workshops and webinars providing an open forum for informal discussion and academic debate, with a focus on inclusivity and diversity.

Please help the PSSA achieve these objectives by becoming a member.

Online Talks: Discovering Women Sculptors

We are pleased to announce two series of online talks ‘Discovering Women Sculptors from the 17th century to the present day’. Generations of women sculptors are gradually being rediscovered and acknowledged. This talented international sisterhood, many of whom have been forgotten, have skilfully practised sculpture through the centuries. Often determined, strong and resilient, they have literally left their chisel marks and fingerprints alongside those of men on the history of sculpture.

In these two exciting series of online talks, experts in the field rediscover these women sculptors from past centuries helping to lift them from obscurity to reveal their life and work, and converse with living artists to explore the challenges facing female sculptors today.

The series began on 26 January with Professor Pauline Rose’s talk ‘Against All Odds: British Women Sculptors c1885-1950’.

Slovak Sculptor, Alina Ferdinandy (1926-1974) at work, 1955, photo, Archive, SNG Bratislava.

Further talks in Series One are as follows (a few are still to be added):

9 February – Luisa Roldán 1652-1706: from Seville to the Royal Court by Dr. Cathy Hall-van den Elsen
16 February – Rediscover Sculptor Malvina Hoffman by Didi Hoffman
24 February – ‘Durability resembling Jasper or Porphery’: Mrs Eleanor Coade & her Artificial Stone Manufactory in Lambeth by Caroline Stanford, The Landmark Trust
2 March – ‘Labeur, Honneur, Douleur’. Félicie de Fauveau (1801-1881) by Dr Philip Ward-Jackson
9 March – Princess Louise, a Royal Sculptor in Victorian Britain by Dr Désirée de Chair
16 March – Sister Sculptors?: Vinnie Ream, Sarah Fisher Ames, and the Suffrage Question in 19th Century America by Dr Melissa Dabakis
22 March – ‘The Slade Girls’ and others: women as medallists from 1880 to the First World War by Philip Attwood
23 March – Anne Seymour Damer – fashioning sculptural identity by Professor Alison Yarrington
30 March – Across the Channel : British women sculptors and Auguste Rodin by Eva Belgherbi
20 April – ‘Mademoiselle, you have the gift of life’: Margaret Butler, Sculptor by Dr Mark Stocker
27 April – Glass Houses and other sculptures: the work of Permindar Kaur by Dr Alice Correia
4 May – Willoughby Gerrish in conversation with Emily Young
18 May – Kirsten Pai Buick on Edmonia Lewis
25 May – “I have created nothing really beautiful:” Augusta Savage’s Practice. by Dr Jeffreen Hayes

Series Two will start in September. Speakers will include Dr Holly Trusted, Erik Bijzet, Professor Paula Murphy, Sir Jonathan Marsden, Dr Jonathan Black, Philip Attwood, Ann Compton and Caroline Stanford.

These talks are free for members of the PSSA and £3.50 per talk for non-members. See Eventbrite to book tickets.

The 2021 Marsh Awards for Excellence in Public Sculpture, Fountains and Conservation


These Awards are presented by the PSSA in partnership with Marsh Christian Trust.
Entries and nominations are encouraged from artists, designers, conservators, architects, commissioning bodies, sponsors and members of the public.
Further details and application form.

Toppling Statues Webinar


The PSSA held a highly successful webinar, Toppling Statues on 23 and 24 November 2020, co-hosted by The Burlington Magazine, which coincided with the Burlington’s annual sculpture issue. It was a lively forum, serious academic debate highlighted the sculptures and their makers, the subjects depicted, their historical, social and economic contexts, and the ways in which these sculptures are viewed today. Speakers included the artists Hew Locke, Sokari Douglas Camp, Sabin Howard and our President, Michael Sandle RA; art critics and writers David Aaronovitch, James Hall and Alexander Adams; art historians Dr Roger Bowdler, Professor Paula Murphy, Dr Nicholas Penny and Dr Mark Stocker; and historians and commentators on the history of slavery, Dr Marie Daouda, Professor Madge Dresser, Sir Geoff Palmer and Helen Paul. Edited recordings of the webinar are available on this website.