Glasgow - City of Sculpture
By Gary Nisbet
Sir Joseph Edgar Boehm

Viennese by birth, he studied in Vienna, Paris and London, where he settled in 1862, becoming a naturalized Briton in 1866.

A favourite of Queen Victoria, she commissioned him to execute bronze statuettes of her family and statues of herself and her father, the Duke of Kent, for Windsor Castle, and appointed him Sculptor in Ordinary to the Queen in 1881.

His public monuments include the statues of John Bunyon, Bedford (1874); Thomas Carlyle, Chelsea (1882); the Wellington Monument; Hyde Park Corner (1889) and Sir Francis Drake, Plymouth Hoe (1885).

He was also responsible for the statue of John Elder in Elder Park, Govan, his only public work in Glasgow, which stands on a granite pedestal carved by the Aberdeen based sculptors Alexander MacDonald & Co., in 1887-8.

Mrs Isabella Elder, the subject's wife and the statue's donor, was particularly fond of Boehm's work and appointed him as its sculptor without hesitation, or recourse to the more usual procedure of holding an open or limited competition.

Boehm was also a sculptor of medals and medallions , and modelled the head of Queen Victoria for the 1887 Jubilee coinage.

He exhibited at the RA from 1882, and was elected RA , 1889.

Boehm died shortly after being created a Baronet in 1889, his lifeless body being found in his studio by Princess Louise, who was reputedly his lover as well as his pupil.


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Works in our Database:
1: Elder Park (Govan),
On the main drive
Monument to John Elder (1888)
Sculptor: JE Boehm; Foundry: James Moore of Thames Ditton; Pedestal by: A MacDonald & Co Ltd
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