Rudolfo Nolli

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Rudolfo Nolli
Born 1888
Died 1963
Nationality Italian
Known for sculpture, architecture
Notable work marble decorations at Old Supreme Court Building, Tanjong Pagar railway station, Sultan Omar Ali Saifuddin Mosque
Awards Cavaliere[1]

Cavaliere Rudolfo Nolli (1888–1963)   was a sculptor and architect from Lombardy, who worked mainly in Southeast Asia during the first half of the 20th century.

He was the nephew of the sculptor Vittorio Novi from Lanzo d'Intelvi, a village close to Lake Como in northern Italy.

Around 1914, Novi created the marble decoration for the new Mahaiudthit Bridge in Bangkok [2] and also did marble works for the Ananta Samakhom Throne Hall.[3] Here Nolli became his assistant and was so successful that he earned himself the title of Cavaliere (knight).

In Singapore Nolli later designed the marble decorations of the College of Medicine Building, Singapore (completed 1926)[4] and of the Old Supreme Court Building (completed 1939).[5][6][7] Nolli had also designed the cast iron lamps and lion reliefs[8] of the Elgin Bridge spanning the Singapore river (completed 1929) and the four allegorical marble reliefs of Agriculture, Industry, Commerce and Transport at the entrance hall of the Tanjong Pagar railway station (1932).[9][10]

In 1950 he created two iconic crests for Gan Eng Seng School at 155 Waterloo Street, which were lost when the school moved to Raeburn Park in 1986. He had formerly crafted similar decorations for the Fullerton Building built in 1924-28. He also created a pair of lions for the Bank of China Building, Singapore (1952), and for the Merdeka Bridge (1954).[11]

Probably his last commission was the huge Sultan Omar Ali Saifuddin Mosque in Brunei (completed 1958) which inspired the novel Devil of a State by Anthony Burgess.


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