One of the many pleasures of a walk round London is the variety of statues and sculptures dotted around the streets, squares and gardens. But have you ever wondered about the subject of a statue, or wanted to know more about the artist? Or just hoped to find some hidden sculptures? The new StatueFindr London app is a way to discover statues and to learn more about them.
What Is StatueFindr London?
StatueFindr London is a list of around 400 statues and sculptures in the City of Westminster and surrounding area. Some of them are well known, like the lions at the base of Nelson’s Column in Trafalgar Square. Others are less so, like the fountain in the courtyard of Dolphin Square. Some have been in existence for centuries; others are very recent.
Each entry is marked on a map, and includes pictures and other information. You can read about the subject of the statue, the date it was unveiled, and a brief biography of the artist.
How To Use StatueFindr London
You can use the app at home, for armchair exploration or to plan future visits. Or you can use it as you walk around Westminster and central London. The map uses GPS to show your current location, so you can see what is nearby. This can make for a different way of exploring the city, taking you away from the usual tourist routes.
You can search by subject. If, for instance, you are interested in animals, mythology or modern sculpture, the index shows you what to look out for. Statues of people are arranged by category, such as Royalty or Explorers. And, as you might expect, there are lots of war memorials.
There is also a list of sculptors. I would have preferred it if this had been organised by surname of the artist, but it is easy enough to scroll through the list.
A Changing Landscape
Statues may appear permanent but, like buildings, they can come and go. Although this app treats them as artworks, they are also laden with symbolism. In many cases they are tributes to real people. Some of these have now faded into obscurity, while others are well-revered writers or scientists. However, some figures are more controversial, and their continuted existence is under review.
On the other hand, new sculptures are being created all the time. Although also works of art, they may differ from commemorative statues in being designed with their surroundings in mind, their primary intention to provoke a reaction in the viewer.
StatueFindr London will be updating the app regularly to reflect this changing landscape.
Purchasing The App
StatueFindr London is available for Android or IOS and costs £5.99 (including updates). There are also versions in French, Italian, Spanish, German, Russian and Mandarin. Finally, if you are interested in discovering more about sculpture in London and elsewhere in the United Kingdom, have a look at the StatueFindr blog. Here you will find articles about individual sculptors, sculpture parks and trails, and more.