In this special episode recorded for The Art of Sporting Heritage Month we are ‘In Conversation with… Christopher Stride’ from the Sporting Statues Project, From Pitch to Plinth.
Presenter Russell Todd starts with perhaps the bronze elephant in the room, by asking Christopher whether statues are actually art at all.
In answer, we explore the idea of artistic interpretation vs realism, and also consider areas like civic identity through sports statues, forgotten histories, fan activism, breaking down barriers, stadium identity, location, and the permanence of statues. We also discuss the reasons sporting statues are commissioned in the first place, be it commercial, celebrating an occasion, or promoting a sport.
Whether you agree that Sporting Statues are absolutely art, or not, it’s clear from this fascinating discussion that they are an important part of our sporting heritage, and provide a permanent link to the UK’s sporting past for our communities and for generations of sports fans to come.
You can find out more about the Sporting Statues project, and access it’s database and map of statues in the UK, and beyond on the Pitch to Plinth website:
You can also follow them on Twitter @SportingStatues