Lippens, RLG (2017) Angels, warriors, and beacons: Totemic law, territorial coding, and monumental sculpture in post-industrial landscapes. SEMIOTICA, 2017 (216). 225 - 248. ISSN 0037-1998

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National or local authorities regularly commission artists to build or construct sculptures and artworks destined for a place in a public space. Some of those sculptures and artworks are monumentally huge. Positioned in the open landscape, they are visible from a considerable distance. This contribution focuses on three such sculptures in the United Kingdom. The first, “Angel of the North,” was completed in 1998 and is standing at Gateshead in the North East of England. The second, “Anglo Saxon Warrior,” has not yet been built to a massive scale – although smaller, life-size versions were – but some debate has taken place in Stoke-on-Trent in North Staffordshire in the West Midlands about the possibility and remote likelihood of its construction. The third, “Golden,” is, however, at the time of writing, in the process of being assembled with an eye on erecting it, in 2014, at the very same location, Stoke-on-Trent. Proposals for all aforementioned artworks emerged against the backdrop of regional de-industrialization and were, at least partly, devised as an answer to economic and social deprivation in both regional localities. In this contribution an effort is made to tease out the symbolic intricacies embedded in all three artworks. Although all include references to what could be called the eternal origins of a mythical common law universe, each suggests, projects, and attempts to encode a moral and legal order in quite distinctly different ways.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: monumental sculpture; public art; totemic law; territorial coding; the Angel of the North
Subjects: K Law > K Law (General)
N Fine Arts > NB Sculpture

Divisions: Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences > School of Criminology and Sociology
Related URLs:
Depositing User: Symplectic
Date Deposited: 05 Jul 2017 10:12
Last Modified: 20 Mar 2019 14:25

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