Wednesday 26 October 2011

County Hall, Jubilee Gardens SE1

'Care of the Sick' or 'Healing'
The sculpture on the Jubilee Gardens facade of County Hall were supplied by Alfred Hardiman after the architect, Ralph Knott, lost patience with the original artist Ernest Cole.
The figures represent 'Open Spaces' and 'Education', both very important topics at a time when large tracts of London were industrial dynamos and children were supposed to be going to work not mucking about in the park.
The unusually dramatic, even hysterical, controversy over the County Hall sculpture, outlined in the entries for Cole's work on the Riverside Walk frontage, drew to a close in harmony largely due to Hardiman's diplomatic skills. Ironically, he was himself to become in the 1930s the centre of a much greater national storm over his memorial to Earl Haig in Whitehall, with one former general describing it as 'a travesty of the Elgin marbles' in a letter to The Times.
'Child Education'

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