Wednesday, 10 March 2010

82 Mortimer Street W1

This lovely couple stand over the main window of 82 Mortimer Street, originally built in 1896 as a house and consulting room for the pioneering anaesthetist Dr Dudley Buxton, later converted into a shop but currently (2013) being re-converted into flats.
The conversion included a nice restoration of the sculpture and the replacement of a hideous shop window that had been inserted into the ground floor with something reminiscent of the original.
The house was designed by Beresford Pite, who was very fond of sculpture. The figures were modelled by J. Attwood Slater and carved by Thomas Tyrell.
The figures are said to be parodies of Michelangelo's famous 'Dawn' and 'Dusk' on the tomb of Lorenzo de' Medici in Florence but I don't think so. Look at the way the man is gazing up and stretching his arms, and the way the girl is drawing a hood over her head. Remember it was built for an anaesthetist. I suggest they are Waking and Sleeping.

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