Sunday, 27 November 2011


Young Queen Victoria
Recently I have been working with Claire, John D. and one of my son's - Tom - on the Queen Victoria and Prince Albert Equestrian sculpture monuments in George Square, Glasgow city centre. The over lifesize bronze monuments were being refurbished and we were asked to re model and then bronze cast missing bronze sections, such as Prince Albert's spur of his boot, crests and missing horse reins. Its an on going project for us over the next few months.
Prince Albert
Weld crack in bronze leg of horse

The bronzes were corroded and cracked in various places, so we took specialist welding equipment on site working from scaffolding to effect 'invisible' repairs. This work being undertaken prior to the sculptures being 'repatinated' with a specialist conservation material.

From my point of view it was great to get up close and personal with the great work of the renowned victorian sculptor Baron Carlo Marochetti. Over the years I had come across his work in public places and various books and always considered him a great sculptor, I would never of thought earlier in my artistic career that I would get to work on this great man's artworks.
Albert work in progress

John McKenna & Queen Victoria 
Tom McKenna working out missing horse breeching
A bit of Marochetti history: Marochetti provided Glasgow with four bronze statues: the equestrian Duke of Wellington in Royal Exchange Square (1840-4); Queen Victoria in George Square (1854), which was moved from St Vincent Place and altered 1866; the pedestrian James Oswald (1856), which was moved to George Square from Charing Cross in 1875; and the equestrian Prince Albert, also in George Square (1866).
Despite the criticism of his public work by his peers in England, the Illustrated London News hailed his statue of Queen Victoria in Glasgow as "by far the finest statue of [the Queen] that has yet been produced", whilst his monument to Prince Albert in Glasgow was so admired by the Queen that she commanded that a copy should be made and erected on Smith's Lawn, Windsor. He died suddenly in 1867 - a year after these monuments were erected.