Wednesday, 15 June 2011

Graham Gould: Scenes from the life of St Augustine, taken from the Confessions, at a London church

The Anglican parish church of Holy Trinity and St Augustine of Hippo, Harrow Green, Leytonstone, London E11, has a west processional door whose external architectural frieze depicts scenes from the life of St Augustine taken from the Confessions. The frieze, in cast concrete and dating from 1974, is the work of the artist and sculptor Steven Sykes (1914-99), who also worked on Coventry cathedral. This communication will identify the scenes depicted and draw on documentary evidence for the story behind the commissioning and construction of the frieze. The wider purpose of the communication is to contribute to understanding of the Nachleben of the Church Fathers in western culture and in particular of the influence of Augustine’s Confessions on art and spirituality.

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