Veronica Ryan OBE,Custard Apple (Annonaceae), Breadfruit (Moraceae) and Soursop (Annonaceae), Narrow Way Square, Hackney, London E8
Eve Shepherd, The Betty Campbell Monument, Central Square, Cardiff, Wales
IN THE CONSERVATION OF A PUBLIC SCULPTURE
Rupert Harris Conservation Ltd Bargate Lions attrib. John Cheere (1709-1787), North side of the Bargate, High Street, Southampton
For further details see Home page
Alex Chinneck, A Spring in your Step, Circus Street, Brighton, Sussex, see link and below.
Alexandre da Cunha, Sunset, Sunrise, Sunset, Battersea Power Station Underground Station, London SW11, see link and below
Laurence Edwards, A Rich Seam, Print Office Street, Doncaster, West Yorkshire, see link and below.
Laurence Edwards, Yoxman, Cockfield Hall, Yoxford, Suffolk, see below.
Diane Lawrenson, Contemplation, Anne Lister, The Piece Hall, Halifax, West Yorkshire see link and below.
Veronica Ryan, Custard Apple (Annonaceae), Breadfruit (Moraceae) and Soursop (Annonaceae), Narrow Way Square, Hackney, London E8, see link and below.
Eve Shepherd, The Betty Campbell Monument, Central Square, Cardiff, Wales, see link and below
Lee SimmonsThe Tay Whale, Dundee Waterfront, Dundee, Scotland, see link and below.
Ben Twiston-Davies, Ebenezer Howard, Howardsgate, Welwyn Garden City, Hertfordshire see link and below.
Jackson Sculpture Conservation – Turning Forms by Barbara Hepworth (1903-1975), The Marlborough Science Academy, Watling Street, St Albans, Hertfordshire
London Stone Conservation – King Alfred the Great, Roman 2nd century A.D./18th century, Trinity Church Square Gardens, London SE1
Rupert Harris Conservation – Bargate Lions attrib. John Cheere (1709-1787), North side of the Bargate, High Street, Southampton (see below)
Circus Street, Brighton, Sussex
My latest public artwork creates the illusion that a spiral staircase is spectacularly springing apart in three directions across the facade of a building in Circus Square, Brighton.
Following the familiar form of a spiral staircase at its base, the sculptural helix uncoils as it rises upwards and outwards over Circus Square. The effect is achieved by separating the handrail and stringer from the central pole, freeing them to dance around each other in a seemingly effortless and organic way. The three steel ribbons burst apart with sculptural energy, introducing movement into the volume above the courtyard while helping to animate and enliven the space below.
The surreal sculpture occupies the full height of a key architectural elevation at the heart of the square, creating a bold and playful backdrop for this new event space. Titled A Spring in your Step the site-specific artwork was conceived in direct response to the location and seeks to contribute to the energetic, creative atmosphere envisaged for it.
Made in Brighton, from marine-grade galvanised steel, the springing staircase is arguably my most complex and ambitious undertaking to date. The sculpture took three years to complete, weighs four tonnes, is 25 metres tall, and follows a non-repeating, expanding and contracting helical form. A Spring in your Step epitomises my work, which disrupts the world around us, transforming the ordinary into the extraordinary. Alex Chinneck
Battersea Power Station Underground Station, London SW11
A commission by Art on the Underground for the new Battersea Power Station Underground Station, Sunset, Sunrise, Sunset is a monumental kinetic sculpture reflecting on daily cycles. Stretching 100m and 60m in length, the artwork incorporates two friezes that face each other along the length of the ticket hall. Made using an outdated advertising mechanism – the rotating billboard – Alexandre da Cunha has created a moving sculpture of shifting colours informed by London sunsets and sunrises. The artwork was inspired by the former control room at Battersea Power Station and its system of vertical bars that regulated the production and output of electricity into the city. Bringing these resonances together with the daily flow of dawn to dusk, Sunset, Sunrise, Sunset refers to cycles, routine, the everyday and eternity.
Print Office Street, Doncaster, West Yorkshire
Forty portraits were modelled of miners and their community. Each two hour sitting was filmed by students, recording not only buttery wax heads evolving in the hands of the sculptor, but fascinating life stories told by the miners. The heads were eventually cast into bronze and set in two 20 tonne blocks of local York Stone, the bed rock in which the coal is found, they were set as if in a coal seam.
A miner stands between them listening not only to the stories of the heads, but to the sounds of the mine. ‘Pit Sense’ was often spoken of by the sitters, the acute sense of the sound and smell of a pit. The forty films of the sessions were edited and now form a valuable social archive, which is accessed by smart phones and QR codes at the info points next to the sculpture, in the centre of Doncaster. Laurence Edwards
Cockfield Hall, Yoxford, Suffolk
The Yoxman is part cliff, cove and tree, his body is suffused with the detritus of leaves, branches, stones and rope. His surface reflects the colours of the nearby fugitive coastline, he is an eroding man connected forever to his land. ‘What we do to it – we do to ourselves’ seems to be the message. Hence his reticence, eyes downcast, he is a revenant bearing witness to a contemporary world endlessly processing by on the busy road before him. Laurence Edwards
The Piece Hall, Halifax, West Yorkshire
Anne Lister was introduced to me a while ago, before Sally Wainwright brought ‘Gentleman Jack’ to our television screens, as a possible project for a public sculpture. I quickly discovered from Lister’s diaries edited by Helena Whitbread and Jill Liddington’s perceptive analysis in Female Fortune: Land, Gender and Authority: the Anne Lister diaries 1833-36 that my subject was a fascinating, but daunting and multifaceted figure, who was intelligent, fearless and driven. She was not only a visionary, business woman and diarist, but also a linguist, musician and mountaineer. Passionate and charming on one hand, she was self-contained, steely and lacking warmth on the other. Above all, Anne Lister was ‘her own man’. Conveying this complexity in a portrait sculpture I found challenging, but rewarding. Diane Lawrenson
Narrow Way Square, Hackney, London E8
Custard Apple (Annonaceae), Breadfruit (Moraceae) and Soursop (Annonaceae) by Veronica Ryan OBE, a 2022 Turner Prize nominee, was unveiled in Hackney E8 in 2021 and was Britain’s first public monument to the Windrush Generation. It comprises three casts of Caribbean fruits; a soursop tropical fruit in bronze, a large, petalled custard apple in Carrara marble, and a breadfruit with its honeycomb skin also in bronze, and draw on Ryan’s memories of seeing these fruits when visiting east London markets as a child, including Hackney’s Ridley Road Market.
Central Square, Cardiff, Wales
The Betty Campbell Monument is the first ever statue of a non-fictionalised woman to be erected in an outdoor public space in Wales. It honours Betty Campbell MBE, Wales’ first black headteacher and champion of equality and diversity, whose work as an education and community leader was recognised internationally. The monument a remarkably accurate representation of its subject and maps out in sculpture her local community which she championed, as well as the people and surroundings that she drew inspiration from. The small portraits under the tree canopy and the featured books play an important role in carrying on Betty Campbell’s legacy of educating future generations about black history. The sculpture is a celebration of inclusivity, diversity and education, and of one woman’s aspiration and determination, not just for herself but for her community.
When I received this commission the statue of the transatlantic slave trader, Edward Colston was still atop his plinth. I saw the unfairness and disconnection of communities silenced and underrepresented within our public spaces. I was determined with the help of Betty Campbell’s community, former school and family to create a monument which not only commemorated the international standing of this incredible woman and pioneer who fought to change the future for generations, but also continued her teaching by paying homage to black history and to the unique history of the working class community in which she was raised.
The sculpture’s base depicts a map of Tiger Bay where Betty lived and worked with models of many iconic buildings from Cardiff Docks. It shows Betty Campbell as a ‘Mother Tree’; her head and shoulders form the canopy under which 10 life-size primary school children of varying ethnicities, stand. As ‘Mother Trees’ do in nature, she is sheltering and nurturing her community as she did throughout her life. Eve Shepherd
Dundee Waterfront, Dundee, Scotland
The work, which is a celebration of the natural world, forms part of the redevelopment of the Waterside on the bank of the Tay in Dundee and was inspired by the town’s historic links to the whaling industry. The sculpture takes the form of the silhouette of a humpback whale in suspended flight. The 36m long whale canopy constructed from a marine-grade tubular stainless steel is suspended on three very refined columns which support it in flight. This covers a 650 square metre immersive, interactive digital ‘play park’ which plays recordings of whale song, a feature which is particularly haunting, poignant and elegiac in this context.
Howardsgate, Welwyn Garden City, Hertfordshire
Ebenezer Howard was a practical idealist. He did not just dream of a better world: in pioneering the Garden City movement, and founding Garden Cities at both Letchworth and Welwyn, he personally brought about real social change. Our statue commemorates his great achievements, but also aims to keep his activist spirit alive. Spade in hand, he exhorts us, and the words around him, from William Blake’s Jerusalem, are his rallying cry:
I will not cease from mental strife,
Nor shall my sword sleep in my hand,
Till we have built Jerusalem
In England’s green and pleasant land.
His spade rests on the word ‘sword’ in this quotation: crucially, he was a pacifist, at a time when other socialists in Europe were pursuing their aims by cruel and violent means. He was heroic, and truly deserves his statue. Ben Twiston-Davies
The Marlborough Science Academy, Watling Street, St Albans, Hertfordshire
Turning Forms is a 2-metre-high abstract sculpture, constructed in reinforced concrete, made by Barbara Hepworth for the Festival of Britain in 1951. Its restoration by Jackson Sculpture Conservation was the culmination of over 10 years of research and collaboration, bringing together specialists in conservation science, modern sculpture and concrete conservation, The Hepworth Foundation and the 20th Century Society. Jackson Sculpture Conservation Ltd
Trinity Church Square Gardens, London SE1
In 2021 London Stone Conservation was commissioned to undertake conservation works to the statue of King Alfred, which had started to deteriorate. During the cleaning and analysis process it was discovered that the statue was partly Bathstone (dating back to the Roman era) and partly Coade stone.
The Bathstone is located at the lower portion of the statue, mainly in the area of the right leg and drapery. The Coade stone was fitted in several sections around the existing Bathstone, creating an almost seamless transition between the materials.
Over the decades, the statue had been poorly restored using cementitious mortars and modern fillers. We removed all of the cement filler, repaired or replaced missing sections with a lime putty mortar and washed sands at a ratio of 1:1. On completion of the repair works, the statue was covered in a limewash shelter coat. London Stone Conservation Ltd
North side of the Bargate, High Street, Southampton
The eighteenth-century lead lions that flank Southampton’s Bargate had fallen into poor physical condition: damage in the form of splitting and cracking, impact damage from being climbed upon, and the failure of relatively poor quality repairs undertaken in 1891 combined to highlight the degraded condition of these unique sculptures. The conservation work returned the lions and their flags to sound structural condition with all structural damage repaired by lead welding, and the insertion of a stainless steel armature and security fixings. Non-structural surface damage in the form of minor blemishes in keeping with the lions’ age as well as historic graffiti was retained; their surfaces were then returned to their original painted finish, in a colour scheme identified by historical research and paint analysis. Rupert Harris Conservation Ltd