November 9, 2020

Here's Something Cool: Sneinton Dragon

         This magnificent dragon sculpture glowers over Sneinton, a suburb of Nottingham, England.  It is stainless steel, and was created in 2006 by craftsman Robert Stubley (he hesitates to call himself an artist, having been a welder by trade).  Stubley had made a few other dragon sculptures previously, apparently just for fun, but was never trained as an artist.  He’s obviously a natural.  He says, “I thought, ‘I’ll have a go at making a dragon in my spare time.’  So I made one and I just got carried away with it then, thinking, ‘How can I use this medium, stainless steel, and how can I form it, and how can I get the results that I want?’”
        Residents of Sneinton were polled as to what sort of public art they’d like, and they chose a dragon.  This may refer to the history of Sneinton, because in 1914 social historian Robert Mellors wrote, “For more than half a century there has existed in certain parts of Nottingham a monster who has devoured in the first year of their lives a large number of infants… His name is SLUM.”  On the other hand, perhaps people requested a dragon sculpture simply because dragons are cool!
        I have not been to Sneinton to see this dragon myself, but it looks most excellent.  Its wingspan is 15 or 16 feet, and it has a lovely variety of texture, from rough scales to gleaming wings.  I wish my town would put up a cool dragon sculpture like this!

[Pictures: Sneinton Dragon, stainless steel sculpture by Robert Stubley, 2006 (Photographs by KevS from Wikimedia Commons and Tracey Whitefoot from Atlas Obscura).]


Pax said...

That is so cool. I especially appreciate that the dragon's creator, who obviously did a wonderful, artistic, and technically competent job, was "never trained as an artist". Let's hear it for others who create beautiful art but are too often scorned because they lack some sort of academic credential. Let talent and creativity speak for itself!

Kristin said...

Quite a scary dragon.looks so real!

Anne E.G. Nydam said...

Yup, just like the dragons I've seen! ;D