Sunday, February 6, 2011

London's host of angels...

Sometimes I wonder if Los Angeles should relinquish its affectionate nickname 'The City of Angels' to another city around the world, like London for instance with all its angelic sculptures and architectural details.

Statue of Eros at Piccadilly Circus
Eros sculpture Piccadilly Circus
Of course one of London's most famous angels is the Statue of Eros flying high over Piccadilly Circus.
Eros Statue London
The statue is also known as the Shaftesbury Memorial Fountain, or maybe more appropriately for the purpose of this discussion, The Angel of Christian Charity.
Eros Statue Piccadilly Circus
It was made in 1893 by sculptor Alfred Gilbert and was one of the first statues cast from aluminium.
Eros Statue Piccadilly Circus
Sadly it looks like the statue bearing the name of the Greek god of love has been vandalized of late and has had his bow bent out of shape at the bottom.

Evening Standard's Eros
Evening Standard Eros
The statue is such an iconic symbol that London's Evening Standard newspaper has it as part of its masthead logo.
Piccadilly masonry angels
If you were to cross the road from the Statue of Eros and continue down Piccadilly, you'd only have to look skyward at some of the cities architecture to see more angelic examples adorning the buildings.
Piccadilly building angel
Not only was I surprised by all the angels in London, but also by where the were to be found.

Selfridges Queen of Time clock angel
Slefridges Queen of Time clock angel
I couldn't believe my eyes when I looked above the Art-Deco main entrance to Oxford Street's designer department store, Selfridges, and saw this rather ornate angel.
Selfridges clock angelQueen of Time Selfridges Clock angel
This magnificent clock was installed in 1931 and depicts the Queen of Time riding in her Ship of Commerce. It's quite a sight and I can't believe I've never seen it before now.
Selfridges Queen of Time angel
Selfridges Queen of Time clock
Other notable London angels include the winged beauties adorning Marble Arch. Based on the Triumphal Arch of Constantine in Rome, the white marble monument can be found at the junction of Oxford Street, Park Lane and Edgware Road where it was moved to in 1851.

Marble Arch
Marble Arch angels
On my travels I also discovered this metal Angel sculpture at Angel tube station in Islington.

Angel by Kevin Boys
Angel sculpture London
Plus this majestic angel can also be seen atop Constitution (or Wellington) Arch at Hyde Park Corner and has the grand title of The Angel of Peace descending on the Quadriga of Victory. The sculpture is by Adrian Jones from 1912.

The Angel of Peace descending on the Quadriga of Victory
Angel of Peace Hyde Park CornerAngel of Peace statue
And finally, aside form all the statues and masonry, with love in the air and Valentine's Day on the way there were lots of shop window displays bearing cute cupids to remind people not to forget their loved ones on the special day.
Chocolate Valentine angel
But never fear, even though London does seem to have an abundance of angels, my Angel Quest around the streets of L.A. shall continue...

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