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This short, chronological survey shows the uses of decorative sculpture in architecture: from inset terracotta reliefs that are part of the fabric of the building, to mosaics, murals, abstract forms and figurative sculpture that have been applied to a building as part of the architectural design scheme. The survey, which takes us through a range of works from the mid-nineteenth century to 2018, also illustrates the diverse and creative range of materials used, including bronze, aluminium, ceramic, fibreglass, and cement.

44 artworks
Narrative and Allegorical Reliefs of Children and Associated Decorative Carving
Photo credit: Gordon Baird / Art UK

Narrative and Allegorical Reliefs of Children and Associated Decorative Carving 1853–1857

John Thomas (1813–1862) and Alexander Handyside Ritchie (1804–1870) and David Rhind (1808–1883)

Yellow sandstone

Curr Night Refuge Relief Sculpture
Photo credit: David Oudney / Art UK

Curr Night Refuge Relief Sculpture 1881

Ireland & Maclaren

Peel Building Reliefs
Photo credit: Martin Henderson / Art UK

Peel Building Reliefs 1896

Henry Lord (1843–1926) and Thomas Earp (1828–1893)

Terracotta

Relief Panels of Virtues, Royal Arms of Scotland, and Associated Carving
Photo credit: Gordon Baird / Art UK

Relief Panels of Virtues, Royal Arms of Scotland, and Associated Carving 1928–1931

Archibald Dawson (1892–1938) and James Augustine Young (1871–1934)

Blaxter stone

H 180 x W 120 cm

Ariel Learns Celestial Music
Photo credit: BBC

Ariel Learns Celestial Music 1932

Eric Gill (1882–1940)

Corsham stone

H 122 x W 183 cm

BBC

Six Allegorical Relief Panels
© the artist's estate. Photo credit: Gordon Baird / Art UK

Six Allegorical Relief Panels 1934–1935

Gilbert William Bayes (1872–1953)

Portland stone

H 180 x W 180 cm

Human Progress in Transport
© the copyright holders. Photo credit: David Roberts / Art UK

Human Progress in Transport 1937–1938

Arthur Sherwood Edwards (1887–1960) and Charles Hayes (active 1937–1938) and J. C. Robinson (active 1937–1938)

Darley Dale stone

H 90 x W 120 cm

Brockington Reliefs
© the copyright holder. Photo credit: Loughborough University

Brockington Reliefs 1952

Wilhelm Josef Soukop (1907–1995)

Concrete

H 90 x W 90 x D 20 cm

Loughborough University

Co-operative Wholesale Society Mural
© the copyright holder. Photo credit: Simon Maddison / Art UK

Co-operative Wholesale Society Mural 1958

G. Bajio (active 1958)

Ceramic

H 823 x W 610 cm

Family Group
© the copyright holder. Photo credit: Cliff Palmer/Art UK

Family Group 1959

Richard Browne (1921–1990)

Bronze & concrete

H 200 x W 150 x D 50 cm

Heraldic Panel
© the copyright holder. Photo credit: Tracy Jenkins / Art UK

Heraldic Panel

William Mitchell (1925–2020)

Concrete

H 150 x W 1083 x D 10 cm

Quebec House Sculpture
© the copyright holder. Photo credit: Mike Longhurst / Art UK

Quebec House Sculpture 1961

Bianca Fischler von Treuberg (1913–1984)

Fibreglass

H 600 x W 170 x D 150 cm

Seven Reliefs
© the copyright holder. Photo credit: Tracy Jenkins / Art UK

Seven Reliefs

William Mitchell (1925–2020)

Concrete

Shakespeare Centre Abstract
© the artist's estate. Photo credit: Shakespeare Birthplace Trust

Shakespeare Centre Abstract 1963

Douglas Wain-Hobson (1918–2001)

Bronze

Shakespeare Birthplace Trust

Wall Sculpture
© the artist's estate. Photo credit: Simon Maddison / Art UK

Wall Sculpture 1964

Peter Lyon (1926–2002)

Aluminium

Artist and Muse
© the copyright holder. Photo credit: Heritage Doncaster

Artist and Muse 1964

Fabio Barraclough (b.1923)

Fibreglass

H 280 x W 210 x D 80 cm

Heritage Doncaster

Epicentre
© the copyright holder. Photo credit: Heritage Doncaster

Epicentre 1964

Franta Belsky (1921–2000)

Fibreglass

H 320 x W 280 x D 50 cm

Heritage Doncaster

County Hall Relief
© the copyright holders. Photo credit: Andrew Lloyd / Art UK

County Hall Relief 1968

William Mitchell (1925–2020) and Jack Catchpole

Polymerised concrete & glass

H 250 x W 1200 x D 30 cm

Shoreditch College Golden Jubilee 1969
© the copyright holder. Photo credit: Brunel University London Arts Collection

Shoreditch College Golden Jubilee 1969 1969

Philip John Whitten (b.1922) (probably)

Metal

H 120 x W 420 cm

Brunel University London Arts Collection

Wall Sculpture
© the copyright holder. Photo credit: Simon Maddison / Art UK

Wall Sculpture c.1970

Antony Hollaway (1928–2000)

Metal

Market Development Mural
© the copyright holder. Photo credit: Simon Maddison / Art UK

Market Development Mural c.1970

Antony Hollaway (1928–2000)

Stainless steel

Four Triangles*
© the copyright holder. Photo credit: Martin Henderson / Art UK

Four Triangles*

unknown artist

Polished metal

Hitchin History Mural
© the artists' estate. Photo credit: Simon Maddison / Art UK

Hitchin History Mural 1972

Henry Collins (1910–1994) and Joyce Collins (1912–2004)

Concrete

Abstract Sculpture
© the copyright holder. Photo credit: Gordon Baird / Art UK

Abstract Sculpture 1973

Richard Coley (1938–2009)

Fibreglass, anodised aluminium & polished steel

H 185 x W 185 cm

Abstract
© the copyright holder. Photo credit: University of Exeter, Fine Art Collection

Abstract 1975

Richard Kindersley (b.1939)

Lead

H 120 x W 180 x D 15 cm

University of Exeter, Fine Art Collection

Three Sculptural Reliefs
© the artists' estate. Photo credit: Lawrence Suss / Art UK

Three Sculptural Reliefs 1976

Henry Collins (1910–1994) and Joyce Collins (1912–2004)

Concrete

BHS Relief
© the artists' estate. Photo credit: Fiona Matthewson / Art UK

BHS Relief 1978 or before

Henry Collins (1910–1994) and Joyce Collins (1912–2004)

Concrete

H 320 x W 2400 cm

Mural
© the artist's estate. Photo credit: University of Surrey

Mural 1978

Duncan Newton (1945–2019)

Painted metal

University of Surrey

Mural
© the copyright holder. Photo credit: University of Surrey

Mural

unknown artist

Painted clay

University of Surrey

Transport Panels
© the artists' estate. Photo credit: Mike Longhurst / Art UK

Transport Panels 1980

Henry Collins (1910–1994) and Joyce Collins (1912–2004)

Ceramic

H 260 x W 192 x D 16 cm

Aluminium Steel Mural
© the artist's estate. Photo credit: Northumbria University

Aluminium Steel Mural 1981

Austin Andrew Wright (1911–1997)

Aluminium

Northumbria University

Ceramic Panels
© the copyright holder. Photo credit: David Oudney / Art UK

Ceramic Panels 1982–1983

J.Keith Donnelly

Ceramic

Kings Mural
© the copyright holder. Photo credit: Mike Longhurst / Art UK

Kings Mural 1985

Maggie Humphry

Ceramic

H 122 x W 252 x D 2 cm

Dove of Peace
© the copyright holder. Photo credit: Mike Longhurst / Art UK

Dove of Peace

unknown artist

Brick

H 350 x W 230 cm

Four Relief Panels: The Modern Myth
© the copyright holder. Photo credit: Gordon Baird / Art UK

Four Relief Panels: The Modern Myth 1987–1988

Brian R. Kelly (b.1958)

Stone aggregate reinforced with resin

H 90 x W 90 cm

Guardians and Mythological Panels
© the copyright holder. Photo credit: Gordon Baird / Art UK

Guardians and Mythological Panels 1988–1990

Jack Faulds Sloan (b.1950)

Galvanised steel

Sculpture Scheme
© the artist & © the copyright holder. Photo credit: Gordon Baird / Art UK

Sculpture Scheme 1994

Alexander Stoddart (b.1959) and Jack Faulds Sloan (b.1950)

Bronze

Mosaic
© the copyright holder. Photo credit: Tony Bennett / Art UK

Mosaic 2000

Maureen O'Kane (b.1961)

Ceramic & stone tiles

H 175 x W 320 cm

Two Rivers: Brick Carving
© the copyright holder. Photo credit: Mike Longhurst / Art UK

Two Rivers: Brick Carving c.2001

Richard Kindersley (b.1939)

Brick

H 184 x W 242 x D 3 cm

Roman Frieze
© the copyright holder. Photo credit: Mike Longhurst / Art UK

Roman Frieze 2002

Giorgio Fanelli

Terracotta

H 225 x W 500 x D 10 cm

Mural
© the copyright holder. Photo credit: Fiona Matthewson / Art UK

Mural 2010

Philippa Threlfall

Terracotta

H 120 x W 270 cm

Charmer
© the artist. Photo credit: University of Surrey

Charmer 2012

Jon Edgar (b.1968)

Bronze

H 80 x W 45 x D 2.5 cm

University of Surrey

Scales of Life
© the copyright holder & © the copyright holder. Photo credit: David Oudney / Art UK

Scales of Life 2014

Elaine Shemilt (b.1954) and Jo White

Umbrella of Support
© the copyright holder. Photo credit: Simon Maddison / Art UK

Umbrella of Support 2018

Jane Visick (active 2018)

Ceramic