Glasgow - City of Sculpture
By Gary Nisbet
George Henry Paulin
(1888-1962)
Born Muckart, Clackmannanshire, the son of the minister of Muckart Parish Church.

Educated at Dollar Academy, he later studied sculpture under Percy Portsmouth at ECA , winning a travelling scholarship which enabled him to study in Paris, Rome, Naples and Florence, where he set up a studio, 1912-16.

During World War I he served with the Lothian and Borders Light Horse, and later with the RAF in Italy.

He worked in Glasgow, 1917-25, producing portrait busts, genre pieces and the war memorials at Kirkudbright (1920); Dollar Academy (1920); Denny (1921); Rutherglen (1924); Milngavie (1924) and the 51st Division Memorial, Beaumont Hamel (1924).

His work in Glasgow is represented by the portrait panel of Francis Thornton Barrett, the City Librarian, Mitchell Library (1922); the statue of Lord Lister, Kelvingrove Park (1923-4); and the memorial to the surgeons William and John Hunter, University of Glasgow, designed by J J Burnet (1924-5).

In 1925 he moved to London where he executed the statue of Pavlova in the London Garden of Remembrance (c. 1932). An active member of the Glasgow Art Club, he exhibited at RSA , 1909-63, RGIFA, 1915-59. He died at Watchfield, Swindon.

In recent years, Paulin's statue of Lord Lister has been a target for 'coning', the practice of placing a traffic cone on a statue's head, which is endorsed by the leader of Glasgow City Council as beneficial to the city's tourist industry.

The team at glasgowsculpture.com think otherwise. Gary Nisbet is seen here removing the cone from the statue to ensure that it is enjoyed as it was meant to be by the sculptor.

Sources:

  • GH [Obit], 12 July, 1962;
  • The Bailie, 3 October, 1923;
  • Laperriere , vol 3.

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