Alfred Gilbert

Albert Gilbert, “Anteros”, Shaftesbury Memorial Fountain, Piccadilly Circus, London

The Shaftesbury Memorial Fountain is located at the southeastern side of Piccadilly Circus in London. It was erected in 1892-1893 to commemorate the philanthropic works of Anthony Ashley Cooper, the 7th Earl of Shaftesbury, who achieved the replacing of child-labor with school education.

Albert Gilbert’s statue of Anteros was the first sculpture in the world to be cast in aluminum, which was just becoming in wide public use in the early 1890s. The statue is set on a bronze fountain, which inspired the marine motifs that Gilbert used on the statue. The model for the sculpture was Albert Gilbert’s studio assistant, a 16 year-old Anglo-Italian, Angelo Colarossi who was born in Shepherd’s Bush. Italian-born piece-moulder and figure maker fernando Meacci was involved in the moulding of the fountain which was most likely cast by George Broad & Son, a major foundry established in the 1870s.

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