Tuesday, 23 June 2009

Artillery House, Artillery Row SW1

This remarkably detailed First World War howitzer appears over the doorway at each end of Artillery House in Artillery Row, Westminster.
The building was designed in 1928 by Maurice Webb, son of Sir Aston, and covered in cream artificial stone. The decoration was by a sculptor of German extraction who was christened Louis Fritz Roselieb. In 1916, when he joined the Royal Flying Corps, he understandably changed his name to Louis Frederick Roslyn.
After the war, Roslyn became famous for war memorials featuring mourning soldiers, sailors, nurses & co in bronze, but here he seems to have simply modeled a real artillery piece, possibly a 6in field howitzer. An odd effect, as though a child had brought his toy guns to Daddy's office and forgotten them.

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