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The Angel, the Tower, and the Skull Carving

The Angel, the Tower, and the Skull Carving
£20.00 1 Available
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Inspired by the gargoyles and ornaments on the outer walls of Chester Cathedral, this unique, hand-carved plaster wall-piece uses medieval-style iconography to speak both of the wonders of this world and as a reminder of the brevity of existence. The visual motifs are also somewhat reminiscent of the symbolism of the tarot. And all that in a sculpture that would fit neatly into the hand, at 9 c.m. x 9 c.m. and 2 c.m. deep. The colour, produced by mixing in dry pigment directly while varnishing the piece, is best described as a shimmering gold on grey stone, with a tinge of copper green in places. The outer coating is yacht varnish, so the piece could be hung outdoors if required. A saw-tooth hanger has been fitted to the reverse, for hanging from a nail or picture hook.


On a visit to Chester Cathedral in the summer of 2019 I was struck by the many small carvings in the stone walls on the exterior, particularly around the doors and windows. On returning home, I made up a block of plaster and when it was ready I sat down to make a carving. I made no preparatory drawings but worked directly with my fine carving tools, looking for the forms hidden inside the plaster block. What emerged was an angel, with the wings of a swan, a little like some of the designs I'd seen in Chester. She seems to be communing with a small figure who stands at the top of a stone tower. The disparity in scale is typical of a medieval approach to images, where no attempt is made to mimic the world merely as it appears. In the lower right corner of the carving a memento mori emerged in the form of a human skull, another typically medieval piece of imagery.

Shipping & delivery

This item will be posted to you by Bloor's Emporium within 3 days of receiving payment.

Shipping destination Cost Additional items
United Kingdom £3.00 £0.00

Returns & Shipping Policy

You have 14 days, from receipt, to notify the seller if you wish to cancel your order or exchange an item.

Unless faulty, the following types of items are non-refundable: items that are personalised, bespoke or made-to-order to your specific requirements; items which deteriorate quickly (e.g. food), personal items sold with a hygiene seal (cosmetics, underwear) in instances where the seal is broken; digital items.

Please note that if your order is being posted outside mainland UK, you (or the recipient) may have to pay customs or VAT charges and a handling fee. The seller is not responsible for any charges or fees that may incur.

Read the Folksy Returns Policy.