Sculptor Ronald Pope - In 2008 three of Derby’s institutions came together to commemorate the 10th anniversary of Ronald Popes death. Here is a snippet of the exhibition guide with kind permission from Robert Burstow.

If you would like more information about this event or the sculptures currently owned by the University of Derby, please get in touch with Robert - R.Burstow@derby.ac.uk 

'Duo' by Ronald Pope

If you are interesting in learning more about Ronald Pope here’s an excerpt from the web site:

“Ronald Pope was a sculptor of the modernist school, creating works in stone, metal and wood.  He studied at the Slade School of Fine Art, under Prof. F McWilliam, and later under Heber Matthews, and while his sculptures show contemporary influences, he retains his own individual style and interpretive form.

Critical evaluation of his work suggests that he was influenced by the work of Henry Moore and Barbara Hepworth, and his style is certainly part of this genre, but he actually drew inspiration for much of his work from landscape form within the Derbyshire Peak District and the Lake District, but also his belief in the essence of harmony within the human spirit. 

His lack of interest in the culture of self promotion within mainstream art, and his relative isolation in Derbyshire, enabled Ronald Pope to develop highly individual sculpture, in various forms and styles, over 4 decades.

Ronald Pope’s work can be found in dozens of locations across the midlands - schools, churches, public and private buildings - and collections are held by Derby Museum & Art Gallery, Watford Museum and the Djanogly Gallery (Nottingham). The Henry Moore Institute have a Ronald Pope sculpture (maquette of ‘Wall Sculpture - Du5-7’) in their collection.”

Missing Sculpture Found - 'Duo' by Ronald Pope

So I had great images of the sculpture when it stood on the Mickleover campus of the University of Derby, but where was it now? A lecturer at the Keddleston Road campus informed me that he had completed an exhibition in the past about the artist, not only that but they still have the sculpture at the University.

I set off to find the sculpture, which took me to the latest campus for the University on Markeaton Street which is the Art, Design and Technology facility. The new building features an internal ‘Street’ a long wide corridor that runs the entire length of the building and is bathed in natural light from the vast expanses of windows. On the second floor the balcony continues this open feel and overlooks the 'Street’, at the end of the second floor balcony where the end of the building is one large span of glass sits the sculpture.

The sculpture stands at just under 6 foot and is in excellent condition, on the images of the sculpture when it stood at the Mickleover campus it appears that a student had lightly carved a smiley face onto the surface of one of the forms, this has since been removed I’m pleased to say. The positioning of the sculpture in front of this large window retains the feel of the sculpture being outdoors as the view outside shows lots of mature trees.

I can’t tell you how excited I felt to be face to face with the sculpture, it really stirred something in me, I’m so happy to be able place a sculpture of my own where once sat a sculpture, and second I would like to incorporate an element from the old sculpture into the new sculpture as a small homage to the sculptor.