Goscombe John

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Goscombe John
William Goscombe John (1860-1952).png
William Goscombe John by George Roilos
Born(1860-02-21)21 February 1860
Cardiff, Wales
Died15 December 1952(1952-12-15) (aged 92)
London, England
Education
Known forSculpture
MovementNew Sculpture

Sir William Goscombe John RA (21 February 1860 – 15 December 1952) was a prolific Welsh sculptor known for his many public memorials.

Biography[edit]

He was born in the Canton area of Cardiff,[1] and as a youth assisted his father, Thomas John, a wood carver, in the restoration of Cardiff Castle. He initially studied in his home town, attending the Cardiff School of Art.[2] He went to London in 1882 and studied at the South London School of Technical Art under Jules Dalou and William Silver Frith and afterward at the Royal Academy schools, where he won the gold medal and a travelling scholarship in 1887.[3] In 1890–91 he studied in Paris with Auguste Rodin.[3] He married the Swiss-born Marthe Weiss. Their daughter Muriel married Frederick Luke Val Fildes, the son of the artist Sir Luke Fildes.[4]

As a young man he adopted the first name Goscombe, taken from the name of a village in Gloucestershire near his mother's home.[5]

Goscombe John returned to Paris in 1892 to show a statuette, Morpheus at the Paris Salon.[6] John embraced the vigous naturalistic style of the New Sculpture movement and cemented his reputation with works such as John the Baptist for Lord Bute and with a number of life-sized figures including The Elf and Boy at Play.[6] By the early 1890s John had established himself as a sculptor of some note and began to receive significant public commissions.[6] Although based in London, John won a number of large commissions in his native Wales. These included his 1916 marble St David Blessing the People and ten other figures for Cardiff City Hall.[6]

Goscombe John was commissioned to design many public monuments and statues of public figures such as the shipping magnate and philanthropist John Cory; John's statue of the latter was erected in front of Cardiff City Hall. In 1921 he designed the memorial at Port Sunlight to the employees of Lever Brothers Ltd who had died in the First World War; he also sculpted portraits of Lord and Lady Lever. He received a gold medal in Paris in 1901, was made a Royal Academician in 1909, was knighted in 1911, and became corresponding member of the French Institute.[3] He settled in Greville Road, Kilburn, London (in a house that had previously belonged to Seymour Lucas), and is buried in Hampstead Cemetery. The memorial statue of his wife, which he designed when she died in 1923, was stolen from the cemetery in 2001 but recovered after a few months; it was put into secure storage, but was again stolen in early 2007.

Public memorials[edit]

1890–1899[edit]

Image Title / subject Location and
coordinates
Date Type Material Dimensions Designation Wikidata Notes
Daniel Owen.JPG
More images
Daniel Owen Mold, Flintshire c.1896 Statue on pedestal Bronze & stone Grade II Q29480968 [7][8]
The Elf, by Sir William Goscombe John.jpg The Elf Kibble Palace, Botanic Gardens, Glasgow 1899 Statue on plinth Marble 2.25m high [9]

1900–1909[edit]

Image Title / subject Location and
coordinates
Date Type Material Dimensions Designation Wikidata Notes
Tomb of Dean Vaughan.jpg Tomb of Dean Vaughan North choir-aisle of Llandaff Cathedral 1900 Tomb with sculpture Marble [10]
Arthur Sullivan Memorial 20170803 111007 (49449984796).jpg
More images
Arthur Sullivan Victoria Embankment Gardens, London 1902 Bust and figure on pedestal Bronze & granite Grade II Q27081637 [11]
Wigan and District Boer War memorial Mesnes Park, Wigan 1903 Sculpture on plinth Stone with bronze additions Removed after repeated vandalism.[12]
Coldstream Guards Vestibule of south nave, St Paul's Cathedral, London 1904 Relief sculptures Gilt, bronze & stone 1.5m x 0.9m [13]
RAMC Memorial Aldershot Group.jpg
More images
RAMC Memorial, Aldershot Gun Hill, Aldershot 1905 Sculpture group, obelisk and wall with plaques Bronze & granite Grade II Q26672950 Architect, Robert Weir Schultz[14][15]
Memorial to A. W. Hughes - geograph.org.uk - 384629.jpg
More images
Alfred W. Hughes Memorial Corris, Gwynedd 1905 Celtic cross on pedestal with a bronze plaque Granite Grade II Q2949920 [16][17]
LiverpoolKingsMemorial.JPG
More images
King's Liverpool Regiment memorial St John's Gardens, Liverpool 1905 Statues with base & wall Bronze & stone Grade II Q26333154 AB Burton (foundary); William Kirkpatrick Ltd (builders)[18][19]
Journalists of the South African War memorial Crypt of St. Faith, St Paul's Cathedral, London 1905 Plaque Marble & bronze [20]
John Cory statue, Cardiff.jpg
More images
John Cory Gorsedd Gardens, Cathays Park, Cardiff 1906 Statue on pedestal Bronze & stone Grade II Q29491668 [21]
Statue of Gwilym Williams 20190926 115848 (48798197932).jpg
More images
Judge Gwilym Williams of Miskin (1839–1906) Opposite Crown Court, Cathays Park, Cardiff 1906 Statue on plinth Bronze & stone Grade II Q29491700 [22][23]
Statue of Royal Sussex Regiment Soldier, Grand Parade, Eastbourne (NHLE Code 1043677) (May 2010).JPG
More images
Memorial to 2nd Battn Royal Sussex Regiment, 1882 to 1902 Grand Parade, Eastbourne 1906 Statue on pedestal Bronze statue, stone pedestal Grade II* Q17555428 AB Burton (foundary)[24][25]
Statue of John Viriamu Jones.jpg John Viriamu Jones Entrance hall of the Main Building of Cardiff University, in Cathays Park 1906 Statue on pedestal Marble
Statue of Godfrey, First Viscount Tredegar.jpg
More images
Godfrey Morgan, 1st Viscount Tredegar Gorsedd Gardens, Cathays Park, Cardiff 1909 Equestrian statue on pedestal with reliefs Bronze & stone Grade II Q29491649 [26]

1910–1919[edit]

Image Title / subject Location and
coordinates
Date Type Material Dimensions Designation Wikidata Notes
Basil Webb 2.jpg The Boy Scout National Museum of Wales, Cardiff 1910 Statuette Bronze Portrait of Basil Webb, son of Henry Webb, and who served as a 2nd lieutenant with the Welsh Guards during the First World War and was killed in December 1917.[27]
Statue of Charles Rolls in Monmouth (9690).jpg
More images
Charles Rolls Agincourt Square, Monmouth 1911 Statue on pedestal Bronze & granite Grade II* Q7604480 [28]
Memorial to the Engine Room Heroes Liverpool 1.jpg
More images
Memorial to the Engine Room Heroes of the Titanic Pier Head, Liverpool 1916 Obelisk with statues Bronze & stone Grade II* Q3305518 [29][30]
Edward VII statue, Pier Head, Liverpool (geograph 4545645).jpg
More images
Edward VII Pier Head, Liverpool 1916 Equestrian statue on pedestal Bronze Grade II Q26320984 [31][3]
Lieutenant Colonel A. Carteret-Thynne DSO Parish Church of St. James the Great, Kilkhampton, Cornwall 1917 Tablet with figure & plaque Marble & bronze Carteret-Thynne was killed in action in 1917, having also served in the South African War.[32]
Statue of Viscount Wolseley, London.jpg
More images
Equestrian statue of the Viscount Wolseley Horse Guards Parade, London 1917 Equestrian statue on pedestal Bronze & Portland stone Grade II Q18159880 [3][33]
Lord-Ninian-Crichton-Stuart-by-Aberdare-Blog.jpg
More images
Lord Ninian Crichton-Stuart Cathays Park, Cardiff 1917 Statue on plinth Bronze & stone Grade II Q29491669 [34]
Capt H B Knott and Major J L Knott DSO St Andrew's Church, Heddon-on-the-Wall, Northumberland 1918 Tablet with relief figures Marble 1.2m by 1.5m [35]

1920–1929[edit]

Image Title / subject Location and
coordinates
Date Type Material Dimensions Designation Wikidata Notes
Lampeter War Memorial (cropped).jpg
More images
Lampeter War Memorial Bryn Square, Lampeter 1921 Statue on pedestal and raised terrace Bronze statue, granite pedestal 4.5m high Grade II Q29489055 Terrace & wall designed by Llewllyn Bankes-Price[36][37]
Port Sunlight - The War Memorial - geograph.org.uk - 474624.jpg
More images
Port Sunlight War Memorial Port Sunlight Merseyside 1921 Celtic Cross on an octagonal podium with eleven sculptured figures and twelve relief panels. Bronze and granite 11.5m high Grade I Q15979246 AB Burton (foundary); William Kirkpatrick Ltd (builders)[38][39][40]
Statue of David Lloyd George, Y Maes, Caernarfon.jpg
More images
David Lloyd George Castle Square, Caernarfon 1921 Statue on plinth Bronze & stone Grade II Q29483625 AB Burton (foundary); Base by J Fletcher of Caernarfon.[41]
Northwich - John Brunner Statue.jpg Statue of Sir John Tomlinson Brunner Grounds of Brunner-Mond works, Winnington, Cheshire 1922 Statue on pedestal Bronze and granite Grade II Q15979536 [42][43]
Thomas Charles Edwards statue, Aberystwyth 2014-09-09 - 2.jpg
More images
Thomas Charles Edwards Old College, Aberystwyth 1922 Statue on pedestal Bronze & granite Grade II Q29488944 AB Burton (foundary)[44][45]
Llanelli War Memorial.jpg Llanelli war memorial People's Park, Llanelli 1923 Relief panel and cenotaph Bronze sculpture & granite cenotaph Grade II Q29490305 [46][47]
The response, 1st world war memorial, Newcastle Upon Tyne - geograph.org.uk - 934871.jpg
More images
The Northumberland Fusiliers Memorial "The Response" Barras Bridge, Newcastle upon Tyne 1923 Bronze relief figures on a granite base with three granite figures on the reverse Bronze and granite Grade I Q17552582 AB Burton (foundary); William Kirkpatrick Ltd (builders)[48][49]
Cenotaph, Alexandra Gardens, Penarth.jpg Penarth war memorial Alexandra Gardens, Penarth 1924 Obelisk-mounted sculpture on stepped plinth Bronze and granite Grade II Q29491428 [50][51]
Wrexham war memorial (8).JPG
More images
Royal Welch Fusiliers memorial Junction of Bodhfryd Rd. & Chester Rd., Wrexham 1924 Twin sculptures on pedestal Bronze and stone [52]
CarmarthenCountyWarMemorial.jpg Carmarthen County war memorial Priory Street, Carmarthen 1924 Statue on pedestal and plinth Bronze and Portland stone 4.5m high [53]
Llandaff War Memorial.JPG
More images
Llandaff Cathedral School war memorial Cathedral Green, Llandaff, Cardiff 1924 3 Sculptures on pedestals Bronze and stone Grade II Q29491677 [54][55]
Statue of James Rice Buckley, Llandaff 2011 2.jpg
More images
James Rice Buckley Cathedral Green, Llandaff 1927 Statue on pedestal Bronze & granite Grade II Q29491672 [56]
Basil Webb Crypt of Lady Chapel, Hereford Cathedral Reredos with figures of 3 saints Basil Webb was the son of Henry Webb who funded the memorial.[57]

1930–1939[edit]

Image Title / subject Location and
coordinates
Date Type Material Dimensions Designation Wikidata Notes
JamesJamesEvanJamesMemorialPontypriddPark.jpg
More images
Evan James & James James Ynysangharad Park, Pontypridd 1930 2 statues on plinths Bronze Grade II* Q17743403 [58][59][60]
Harry Seymour Berry, Baron Buckland of Bwlch Outside Central Library, Merthyr Tydfil 1931 Statue on pedestal Bronze and stone Grade II [61]
Queensway Tunnel Liverpool George V.jpg
More images
George V Entrance to Queensway Tunnel, Liverpool 1939 Statue Bronze
Statue of Queen Mary, Queensway Tunnel.jpg
More images
Queen Mary Entrance to Queensway Tunnel, Liverpool 1939 Statue Bronze

Other works[edit]

John's output also included:

Saint John the Baptist
  • Statue of Saint John the Baptist.[62]
  • Sculptures on Electra House in Moorgate, City of London, these dating from 1900 to 1903 and representing Egypt, Japan, India and China.[63]
  • The work Grief dating to 1890.[64]
  • Queen Alexandra. Statue on the facade of the Victoria & Albert Museum.[65]
  • Carved figures on a reredos in St John the Baptist Church, St John Street, Cardiff.[66]
  • Designed the regalia for the investiture of the Prince of Wales at Carnarvon in 1911.[3]
  • Designed the King George V Silver Jubilee Medal in 1935.[3]
  • Merlin and Arthur (c.1896) in the collection of the Amgueddfa Cymru Caerdydd [National Museum of Wales, Cardiff] Accession number: NMW A 127. This bronze was exhibited at The Royal Academy in 1902.[67]
  • Memorial Relief to the late Canon Guy D.D, (1897) in Llandaff Cathedral.[68]

Goscombe John's output was prolific and also includes the seated statue of the Duke of Devonshire, at Eastbourne, King Edward VII, at Cape Town; Prince Christian Victor, at Windsor; the historian Lecky at Trinity College, Dublin, and the equestrian statue of the Earl of Minto at Calcutta. Goscombe John also executed the monument to the Marquis of Salisbury, in Westminster Abbey[3] and Hatfield Church.

The National Museum of Wales holds many works by Goscombe John.[69][3]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Introduction to "Sir William Goscombe John, R.A., LL.D. Sculpture in the National Museum of Wales Catalogue" dated 1948
  2. ^ "The Welsh Cartoonist: An Interesting Chat With Mr. Staniforth". The Weekly Mail. papuraunewyddcymru.llgc.org.uk. 19 December 1906. Archived from the original on 29 May 2014. Retrieved 29 May 2014.
  3. ^ a b c d e f g h i David Buckman (2006). Artists in Britain Since 1945 Vol 1, A to L. Art Dictionaries Ltd. ISBN 0 953260 95 X.
  4. ^ University of Glasgow History of Art / HATII (2011). "Sir William Goscombe John RA". Mapping the Practice and Profession of Sculpture in Britain & Ireland 1851–1951. Retrieved 5 April 2020.
  5. ^ "John, Sir William Goscombe (1860–1952), sculptor and medallist". Oxford Dictionary of National Biography.
  6. ^ a b c d Oliver Fairclough (10 December 2011). "William Goscombe John (1860–1952)". National Museum of Wales. Retrieved 11 April 2020.
  7. ^ Cadw. "Statue of Daniel Owen (365)". National Historic Assets of Wales. Retrieved 26 April 2020.
  8. ^ "Daniel Owen". Hither & Dither. Retrieved 20 November 2012.
  9. ^ "The Elf by Sir William Goscombe John". www.victorianweb.org. Retrieved 14 January 2020.
  10. ^ "Tomb of Dean Vaughan". Victorian Web. Retrieved 19 November 2012.
  11. ^ Historic England. "Sir Arthur Sullivan Memorial (1238072)". National Heritage List for England. Retrieved 6 April 2020.
  12. ^ "War Memorials Register, Wigan and District - South African War - Original (Lost)". Imperial War Museum. Retrieved 5 April 2020.
  13. ^ "War Memorials Register: Coldstream Guards - Boer War". Imperial War Museum. Retrieved 5 April 2020.
  14. ^ "War Memorials Register, Royal Army Medical Corps - South African War". Imperial War Museum. Retrieved 4 April 2020.
  15. ^ Historic England. "Royal Army Medical Corps Boer War Memorial (1393807)". National Heritage List for England. Retrieved 4 April 2020.
  16. ^ Cadw. "Hughes Memorial (22742)". National Historic Assets of Wales. Retrieved 5 April 2020.
  17. ^ "Welsh History Month: Corris Roadside Memorial". Wales Online. 20 May 2013. Retrieved 5 April 2020.
  18. ^ "War Memorials Register, King's Liverpool Regiment Boer War". Imperial War Museum. Retrieved 4 April 2020.
  19. ^ Historic England. "Monument to the King's Liverpool Regiment (1073470)". National Heritage List for England. Retrieved 4 April 2020.
  20. ^ "War Memorials Register: Journalists - South African War". Imperial War Museum. Retrieved 5 April 2020.
  21. ^ Cadw. "Statue of John Cory (13692)". National Historic Assets of Wales. Retrieved 5 March 2020.
  22. ^ Cadw. "Statue of Gwilym Williams of Miskin (13735)". National Historic Assets of Wales. Retrieved 26 April 2020.
  23. ^ "Judge Gwilym Williams". Victorian Web. Retrieved 20 November 2012.
  24. ^ "War Memorials Register, 2nd Battn Royal Sussex Regiment, 1882 to 1902". Imperial War Museum. Retrieved 4 April 2020.
  25. ^ Historic England. "Bronze statue of Royal Sussex Regiment ... (1043677)". National Heritage List for England. Retrieved 4 April 2020.
  26. ^ Cadw. "Statue of Godfrey, First Viscount Tredegar (13665)". National Historic Assets of Wales. Retrieved 5 April 2020.
  27. ^ "The Boy Scout". Victorian Web. Retrieved 19 November 2012.
  28. ^ Cadw. "Charles Rolls, Monmouth (2229)". National Historic Assets of Wales. Retrieved 6 April 2020.
  29. ^ "War Memorials Register, Engine Room Heroes (Titanic Memorial)". Imperial War Museum. Retrieved 4 April 2020.
  30. ^ Historic England. "Memorial to Heroes of the Marine Engine Room (1209973)". National Heritage List for England. Retrieved 4 April 2020.
  31. ^ Historic England. "Monument of Edward VII (1068224)". National Heritage List for England. Retrieved 26 April 2020.
  32. ^ "War Memorials Register: Lieutenant Colonel A Carteret-Thynne". Imperial War Museum. Retrieved 5 April 2020.
  33. ^ Historic England. "Statue of Field Marshal Viscount Wolseley (1357125)". National Heritage List for England. Retrieved 5 April 2020.
  34. ^ Cadw. "Statue of Lord Ninian Edward Crichton-Stuart (13693)". National Historic Assets of Wales. Retrieved 26 April 2020.
  35. ^ "War Memorials Register: Capt HB Knott and Maj JL Knott DSO - Tablet". Imperial War Museum. Retrieved 5 April 2020.
  36. ^ Cadw. "War Memorial and surrounding terrace and walls (10425)". National Historic Assets of Wales. Retrieved 4 April 2020.
  37. ^ "War Memorials Register, Lampeter". Imperial War Museum. Retrieved 4 April 2020.
  38. ^ "War Memorials Register: Port Sunlight and Lever Brothers Ltd Employees". Imperial War Museum. Retrieved 4 April 2020.
  39. ^ Historic England. "Port Sunlight War Memorial (1343491)". National Heritage List for England. Retrieved 4 April 2020.
  40. ^ Catherine Jones (31 October 2014). "Port Sunlight war memorial grant Grade I listed status". liverpoolecho.co.uk. Retrieved 11 April 2020.
  41. ^ Cadw. "Statue of David Lloyd George (3843)". National Historic Assets of Wales. Retrieved 6 March 2020.
  42. ^ Edward Morris & Emma Roberts (2012). Public Sculpture of Cheshire and Merseyside (excluding Liverpool). Public Sculpture of Britain. 15. Liverpool: Liverpool University Press. ISBN 978-1-84631-492-6.
  43. ^ Historic England. "Statue of Sir John Brunner in front of Research Lab., Winnington Works (1161131)". National Heritage List for England. Retrieved 6 March 2020.
  44. ^ Cadw. "Statue of Thomas Edwards (10311)". National Historic Assets of Wales. Retrieved 5 March 2020.
  45. ^ "Statue of Thomas Charles Edwards". Hither & Dither. 27 July 2012. Retrieved 5 March 2020.
  46. ^ Cadw. "Great War Memorial in gardens of the Town Hall (11964)". National Historic Assets of Wales. Retrieved 4 April 2020.
  47. ^ "War Memorials Register, Llanelli". Imperial War Museum. Retrieved 4 April 2020.
  48. ^ "War Memorials Register: The Response 1914". Imperial War Museum. Retrieved 4 April 2020.
  49. ^ Historic England. "War Memorial (The Response) (1186201)". National Heritage List for England. Retrieved 4 April 2020.
  50. ^ "War Memorials Register: Penarth". Imperial War Museum. Retrieved 4 April 2020.
  51. ^ Cadw. "Cenotaph (13340)". National Historic Assets of Wales. Retrieved 4 April 2020.
  52. ^ "War Memorials Register: Royal Welch Fusiliers". Imperial War Museum. Retrieved 3 April 2020.
  53. ^ "War Memorials Register, Carmarthenshire". Imperial War Museum. Retrieved 4 April 2020.
  54. ^ "War Memorials Register: Llandaff and Llandaff Cathedral School". Imperial War Museum. Retrieved 4 April 2020.
  55. ^ Cadw. "Llandaff War Memorial (13703)". National Historic Assets of Wales. Retrieved 4 April 2020.
  56. ^ Cadw. "Statue of James Rice Buckley (13698)". National Historic Assets of Wales. Retrieved 5 March 2020.
  57. ^ "War Memorials Register: Basil Webb". Imperial War Museum. Retrieved 5 April 2020.
  58. ^ Cadw. "Evan and James James Memorial (24841)". National Historic Assets of Wales. Retrieved 26 April 2020.
  59. ^ "Evan James and James James Statues". Hither & Dither. Retrieved 20 November 2012.
  60. ^ "Anthem writers' memorial". historypoints.org. Retrieved 9 May 2020.
  61. ^ Cadw. "Statue and Plinth yo Harry Seymour Berry (11443)". National Historic Assets of Wales. Retrieved 5 July 2020.
  62. ^ Encyclopædia Britannica, ed. 1911, vol. 24, pg. 505, Plate IV.
  63. ^ Sculptures on Electra House Victorian Web. Retrieved 20 November 2012
  64. ^ Grief Victorian Web. Retrieved 19 November 2012
  65. ^ Queen Alexandra Victorian Web. Retrieved 20 November 2012
  66. ^ Reredos in St John the Baptist Church Victorian Web. Retrieved 20 November 2012
  67. ^ Merlin and Arthur Victorian Web. Retrieved 19 November 2012
  68. ^ Memorial Relief to the late Canon Guy D.D Victorian Web. Retrieved 19 November 2012
  69. ^ Some works held by the National Museum of Wales National Museum of Wales. Retrieved 19 November 2012

External links[edit]