Call for artist's work to be honoured with plaque

Greg Foxsmith is calling for the statue to be given some context in the park.

Greg Foxsmith is calling for the statue to be given some context in the park. - Credit: Greg Foxsmith

Hundreds walk past it every day and many will admire its fine design, but due to a lack of information, few will know anything about it. 

The sculpture, which depicts an African mask, has stood near the Peace Garden of Islington’s Elthorne Park for years but features no reference to the artist or any context. 

Former Islington Council member Greg Foxsmith said he has spent 20 years trying to find out the history. 

And after a call for help on his blog, he has traced the work to Nigerian artist Emmanuel Taiwo Jegede. 

Mr Foxsmith, a lawyer and local history blogger, has called on Islington Council to install a plaque to commemorate the artist. 


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“I’ve always admired the work,” he said. 

“And even more so recently, when I glimpsed it from a distance through the trees, on the path into the park opposite hill rise surgery.”

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“It is by Emmanuel Taiwo Jegede, a Nigerian (Yoruba) sculptor who studied in London in the seventies. 

“He was one of three shortlisted sculptors for the erstwhile Peace Garden sculpture. He presumably must have been the runner up so offered a commission for the main park as consolation.”

The statue was designed by Nigerian artist Emmanuel Taiwo Jegede

The statue was designed by Nigerian artist Emmanuel Taiwo Jegede - Credit: Greg Foxsmith

The Peace Garden contains Upon Reflection, a self-portrait of artist Kevin Atherton, which was recently restored. 

Islington Council has been contacted.

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