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Statues - Hither & Thither

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(University of Birmingham)


Michael Faraday
Newington Butts, England 1791 - Hampton Court, Middlesex 1867
English scientist who contributed to the fields of electromagnetism and electrochemistry
Eduardo Paolozzi

Birmingham /  Faraday   Birmingham /  Faraday


Colossal statue of Faraday sitting on a chair.

On the edge of the base is a part of The Dry Salvages, the third poem of T. S. Eliot's Four Quartets, This poem discusses the nature of time and what humanity's place is within time. Life is described metaphorically as travelling in a boat and humanity's fixation on science and future gain keeping the travellers from reaching their destination (Wikipedia).:

[front] fare forward, travellers! not escaping from the past   ·
into different lives, or into any future   ·
you are not the same people who left that station   ·
or who will arrive at any [right] terminus   ·
while the narrowing rails slide together behind you   ·
and on the deck of the drumming liner   ·
watching the furrow that widens behind you   ·
you shall not think 'the past is finished'   ·
or 'the future is before us'   ·
at nightfall, in the rigging [back] and the aerial   ·
is a voice descanting (though not to the ear,   ·
the murmuring shell of time, and not in any language)   ·
fare forward, you who think that you are voyaging;
[left] you are not those who saw the harbour   ·
receding, or those who will disembark   ·
here between the hither and the further shore   ·
while time is withdrawn, consider the future   ·
and the past with an equal mind   · the dry salvages   · t.s. eliot


Eduardo Paolozzi

A gift from the artist to mark the
Centenary of the Univeristy


Sir Eduardo Paolozzi said of this colossal bronze sculpture, commissioned to mark the centenary of the University of Birmingham's Royal Charter, that it was ‘not of Faraday, but for him'. Faraday discovered the laws of electro-magnetic rotation and electrical induction and, among many other principles, explored the science of terrestrial magnetism. The loops of bronze between the figure's hands are a visual manifestation of natural fields of force.


Sources & Information


Location (N 52°27'1" - W 1°56'10")

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Item Code: gbwm074; Photograph: 24 June 2014
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