Christopher Wren FRS (1)

I was wandering round the Ashmolean when I came upon Edward Pearce’s bust of Christopher Wren, which I had forgotten was here – a bust of such extraordinary liveliness and luminous intelligence.   Of course, one is discouraged from reading character out of the way someone is represented artistically, but it is hard not to from Pearce’s extraordinarily effective depiction of Wren in the early 1670s, when he was at the height of his powers, embarking on the long journey of designing and building St. Paul’s, using Edward Pearce, its sculptor, as one of his draughtsman, employed to do drawings (‘Modells’) for the portico and dome:-


4 thoughts on “Christopher Wren FRS (1)

  1. Ivan Gaskell says:

    Wren must have been absolutely fascinating. His account of his one meeting with Bernini (in Paris) is so vivid. He wrote: “Bernini’s Design of the Louvre I would have given my Skin for, but the old reserv’d Italian gave me but a few Minutes View; it was five little Designs in Paper, for which he hath receiv’d as many thousand Pistoles; I had only Time to copy it in my Fancy and Memory; I shall be able by Discourse, and a Crayon, to give you a tolerable Account of it.” Wow!

  2. Many thanks to Ivan Gaskell for that !

    I don’t think you should be so hesitant in reading Pearce’s depiction of Wren. A remarkable depiction of a remarkable man is well worth studying, surely ?

  3. Dick Humphreys says:

    Tried to borrow the bust for my ‘Holbein to Hockney’ show in Madrid
    Alas, it was unavailable – it is a wonderful thing.

Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s