Peter Pan statue
The Peter Pan statue is a bronze sculpture of J. M. Barrie's character Peter Pan. It was commissioned by Barrie and made by Sir George Frampton. The original statue is displayed in Kensington Gardens in London, to the west of The Long Water, close to Barrie's former home on Bayswater Road. Barrie's stories were inspired in part by the gardens: the statue is located at the place where Peter Pan lands in Barrie's book The Little White Bird after flying out of his nursery. Six other casts made by the original artist have been erected in other locations around the world.
Statue in Kensington
The sculpture stands about 14 feet (4.3 m) high. It has a tall conical form, like a tree stump, topped by a young boy, approximately life size for an eight year old, wearing a nightshirt and blowing a thin musical instrument like a trumpet or flute, sometimes interpreted as pan pipes. The sides of the stump are decorated with small figures of squirrels, rabbits, mice, and fairies. Barrie had intended the boy to be based on a photograph of Michael Llewelyn Davies wearing a Peter Pan costume, but Frampton chose another model, possibly James W. Shaw or William A. Harwood.
A completed plaster model of the work was exhibited at the Royal Academy in May 1911. Barrie had the original bronze erected in London on 30 April 1912, without fanfare and without permission, so that it might appear to children that the fairies had put it in place overnight. He published a notice in The Times newspaper the following day, 1 May: "There is a surprise in store for the children who go to Kensington Gardens to feed the ducks in the Serpentine this morning. Down by the little bay on the south-western side of the tail of the Serpentine they will find a May-day gift by Mr J.M. Barrie, a figure of Peter Pan blowing his pipe on the stump of a tree, with fairies and mice and squirrels all around. It is the work of Sir George Frampton, and the bronze figure of the boy who would never grow up is delightfully conceived."
He donated the sculpture to the city of London, although some critics objected to him advertising his works by erecting a sculpture in a public park without permission. It became a Grade II* listed building in 1970. A plaque was unveiled by Princess Margaret in 1997.
Frampton made a series of small bronze reproductions of the Pan figure from 1913 to his death in 1928. Examples were sold at Bonham's in March and November 2015, and one was sold in Scotland in 2016 for £60,000.
Frampton made six other full-size casts from the original moulds, which are situated in:
- Egmont Park, in Brussels, donated to the Belgian state by Frampton in 1924 to recognise the Anglo-Belgian friendship during the First World War; it suffered bullet damage in the Second World War, and was listed as a Belgian historical monument in 1975.
- Bowring Park, in St. John's, Newfoundland, erected on 29 August 1925, as a tribute to Betty Munn, the daughter of John Shannon Munn, who had died aged three on 23 February 1918 in the sinking of SS Florizel.
- Sefton Park, in Liverpool, erected overnight on 16 June 1928; it was vandalised in 1990; restored, it was relocated to a position in the grounds of the palm house; it received a Grade II listing in 1985.
- Queens Gardens, in Perth, Western Australia, erected overnight on 10 June 1929, and donated by Rotary International to the Perth City Council to celebrate the centenary of the state of Western Australia (founded in 1829 as Swan River Colony).
- Toronto, Ontario, Canada; erected on 14 September 1929 by the College Heights Association in a park that became known as "Peter Pan Park" after the statue, but later renamed Glenn Gould Park.
- The grounds of Rutgers University, Camden, New Jersey, by Eldridge R. Johnson in 1929, and located outside the Walt Whitman Arts Center.
Other sculptors have created statues of Peter Pan, including two by Alistair Smart near the birthplace of J. M. Barrie in Kirriemuir in Scotland; Charles Andrew Hafner's 1928 sculpture in Carl Schurz Park in New York City; Ivan Mitford-Barberton's sculpture given to the Red Cross Children's Hospital in Cape Town in 1959; Cecil Thomas's 1965 sculpture in Dunedin Botanic Garden, and Diarmuid Byron O'Connor's 2000 sculpture at Great Ormond Street Hospital in London.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Peter Pan monuments by George Frampton.|
- City of London – 2: St. Paul's Cathedral, Church Monuments Society, retrieved 16 May 2017
- The Peter Pan Statue, Kensington Gardens, The Royal Parks
- Peter Pan statue (west of Serpentine), National Heritage List for England, Historic England
- Peter Pan in Kensington Gardens, London Remembers
- Peter Pan Monument, Kensington Gardens, by George Frampton
- Peter Pan Statue, publicartaroundtheworld.com
- Statue of Peter Pan, Liverpool, National Heritage List for England, Historic England
- Peter Pan, Monument Australia
- Peter Pan Sculpture at Johnson Park, Camden, New Jersey
- Historicist: To the Spirit of Children at Play, Torontoist, 21 June 2008
- Peter Pan Sculpture by Sir George Frampton To Be Sold At Bonhams, Artlyst, 4 March 2015
- Peter Pan sculpture to be auctioned, BBC News, 3 April 2016
- Frampton, Peter Pan, dated 1920, Lyon & Turnbull, 6 April 2016
- Frampton, Peter Pan undated cast, Bonham's, 11 March 2015
- Frampton, Peter Pan cast dated 1913, Bonham's, 4 November 2015