Sir Merton Russell-Cotes

Sir Merton Russell-Cotes, after 1894
Oscar F. Spalmach (1864–1917)
Marble
SC127
Image © Russell-Cotes Art Gallery and Museum

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Sir Merton Russell-Cotes

Merton was a central figure in Bournemouth’s rapidly expanding political and social scene and was Mayor in 1894-1895. Merton successfully campaigned for a number of improvements of the town including the construction of the Undercliff Drive and Promenade and a direct railway connection from London. This statue was commissioned to mark the occasion of Merton becoming Mayor hence the civic regalia.

Born in Venice, Oscar Spalmach initially served in the Grenadier Guards before he studied at the Royal Institute of Fine Arts in Venice. After graduating in 1892, he took up a position at the studio of Orazio Andreoni in Rome, where he worked for the next decade. This piece is not the companion piece to the bust of Annie on the right.

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