Friday, May 30, 2014

OXFORD: Gargoyles and Grotesques

A "grotesque" at New College
who seems to despair
at what he sees.
All over Oxford are buildings with gargoyles or "grotesques".

The difference between them, don't you know, is that a "grotesque" doesn't spout water.

Some are in the shape of faces, some are animals, some are entire people. 

Look carefully and you will find some of them engaged in unexpected (for sculptures) activities such as nose-picking, or bladder relief.

You can buy a book on the subject, Gargoyles and Grotesques, for five pounds sterling, as of the last time I checked the price, plus postage.

Oxford Today has today, May 30, 2014, picked up this thread today with major coverage.

Another source, for information on gargoyle sculptors in the United States, is American Gargoyles, which provides photos of winged griffins, fallen angels, and damned souls of Washington's National Cathedral, the Woolworth Building, the Cathedral of St. John the Divine in New York City, Princeton University, the University of Pennsylvania, Tribune Tower in Chicago, Grace Cathedral in San Francisco, and other buildings.

The Oxford Gargoyles are also, by the way, a jazz a capella singing group.

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