At last we may congratulate ourselves that we have, in the centre of London town, a sculptural monument of supreme importance which British art may claim with pride. The Memorial to Queen Victoria, which, as far as it is completed, King George, in becoming state, unveiled last month, is a work which in its unity, dignity, and nobility of conception, its large simplicity and harmonious beauty of design, and its accordance with the great vital ideals of sculpture in the true structural expressiveness and the broad live modelling of natural form, is in every way worthy of its purpose as a national and imperial tribute. Moreover, it is noteworthy that, in its architectural as well as its sculptural features, and even to the designing and modelling of the beautiful bronze lamp-posts, with their naval symbolism, that surround it, this is entirely the invention and work of one man. And surely it is the biggest thing yet accomplished by an English sculptor, not unworthy of comparison with the famous monumental works of Continental masters, while possessing a distinctively British character of its own. Certainly Thomas Brock, R.A., has, by the splendid result of his nine years' labour, fully justified the wise discrimination of the Memorial Executive Committee in entrusting to him alone the entire conception and execution of this monument, a work calling not only for high artistic qualities and virile craftsmanship, but for strength of character, tenacity of purpose, and unfailing energy and resource. Equally happy has proved the selection of Sir Aston Webb to provide a suitable setting for Brock's monument in the reconstruction and architectural adorning of the Mall, as part of the great Memorial scheme; for no two artists could have worked together to more harmonious result. — Malcolm C. Salaman, The Studio

Modern Photographs

Photographs of Sketch-Models and of the Memorial in Progress

Bibliography

Beattie, Susan. The New Sculpture. New Haven: Yale University Press, 1983.

Salaman, Malcolm C. “Sir Thomas Brock's Queen Victoria Memorial.” The Studio 53 (June 1911) 29-40. Internet Archive digitized from a copy in the University of Toronto Library. [Full text].


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Last modified 4 December 2011