John Steell (1804-91)
Source: Illustrated London News
Complete caption: “Statue of the Late Right Hon. James Wilson, Finance Minister for India, by John Steell, R.S.A., to be erected at Calcutta.”
“A statue of the late Right Hon. James Wilson, one of the Secretaries of her Majesty’s Treasury, and sometime Secretary to the Finance Department of tho Government of India, has been executed by Mr. John Steell, RSA, and her Majesty's sculptor for Scotland Shortly after the melancholy death of Mr Wilson, whose great administrative abilities had just bepin to tell on the financial affairs of India when he was prematurely taken away, a subscription was entered into among the merchants of Calcutta for a memorial which should express the public sense entertained of his brief but valuable services. It was resolved that the memorial should be in the form of a marble statue, and a committee of gentlemen in Liverpool were requested to employ on artist who would he likely to do full justice to the work. Mr. John Steell, R.S.A., her Majesty's sculptor for Scotland, had already executed from life a bust of Mr. Wilson for the Royal Scottish Academy. He bad also produced for Calcutta an admirable statue, also in marble, of the late Marquis of Dalhousie, as a memorial of his distinguished rule as Governor-General. To him, therefore, the commission for a full-length statue of Mr. Wilson was given; and he has performed his task, as our Illustration will show, with remarkable success. The figure is a little larger than life, and has been cut from a fine block of Carrara marble. Mr. Wilson is represented in the act of expounding some of his schemes, and the expression of the face conveys the idea that he has just put forward some argument, and is pausing to observe its effect on those to whom he speaks. The attitude is erect, the left foot slightly advanced, and over the shoulders is loosely thrown a cloak, which falls in graceful folds behind.”
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