GEORGE JAMES FRAMPTON (1860-1928)
PETER PAN, DATED 1920
Patinated bronze, signed in the bronze with monogram GF and dated 1920, inscribed with an encircled PP bronze, raised on a veined green marble base
Total height 52.5cm
Estimate £ 20,000-30,000
Provenance: Private Scottish Collection
Literature: Skipwith, Peyton 'Sir George Frampton & Sir Alfred Gilbert, Peter Pan & Eros: Public & Private Sculpture in Britain 1880-1940', The Fine Art Society, London 2002
Note: Sir George Frampton's 'Peter Pan' is one of the best-known monuments in London, based on the character from J.M. Barrie's novel of the same name, with the author commissioning the statue in Kensington Gardens himself. This bronze study is one of a small number of casts from the original life size bronze, which was erected overnight in secret in 1912, having only been shown previously in 1911 at the Royal Academy, London. With no pre-publicity, simply a brief announcement was made in The Times that day:
'There is a surprise in store for the children who go to Kensington gardens to feed the ducks in the serpentine this morning…a May-day gift by Mr J.M. Barrie, a figure of Peter Pan blowing his pipe on the stump of a tree, with fairies and mice and squirrels all around. It is the work of Sir George Frampton, and the bronze figure of the boy who would never grow up is delightfully conceived.'
Sir George James Frampton (1860-1928) studied at the Royal Academy, becoming president of the Royal Society of Sculptors in 1911, and is known as one of the leading figures in the New Sculpture movement. Peter Pan marks a technical milestone in the evolution of public sculpture in Britain, reflecting advances in casting by two of Britain's leading foundries at the time, Singer's and Burton's. Following its appearance, a further six life-sized casts were erected, in Liverpool, Australia, Belgium, Canada, and the US, demonstrating the wide-spread appeal of Frampton's interpretation of the character.
Sold for £60,000 (buyer's premium included)