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Sculpture Trail Artists

Andy Edwards: Mayfly Throne, Sir Stanley Matthews, Staffordshire Saxon

The Staffordshire Saxon by Andy Edwards

Born in Stoke-on-Trent in 1964, Andy Edwards graduated from Staffordshire University in 1986 and since then has worked as a figurative sculptor, artist and precision model maker. After graduating Edwards spent seven years working within the special effects industries, working in puppetry and model making at the studios of Madame Tussauds.


In the 1990's Edwards returned to Stoke-on-Trent and spent three years working under Professor Colin Melbourne. Edwards co-founded and for eight years ran a very unique figurative sculpture course at Stafford College.


Edwards approach to his art features a journalistic quality, by using his sculpture to convey a story, idea or reflect a point in history. Research and historical accuracy are a vital part of Edwards’ creative process, his attention to detail and passion for the story behind the work is the driving force for his sculpture.


It is Edwards’ belief that for public art to be relevant it must inspire people, by the sharing of stories as a way of mass communication. Public art must have something worth saying. Edwards’ devotion to his work is clear, by his use of symbolism, multiple meaning and the layering of ideas.


His approach to art centres heavily on creative sustainability and creating jobs for apprentices and fellow artists. By being involved in a lot of collaborative artwork and subcontracting during his projects Edwards adds a sense of community to his work.


Edwards has previously had statues presented to President Barack Obama, Muhammad Ali and Desmond Tutu. He continues to receive sculpture and statue commissions of national significance and an increasing international recognition. Three of Edwards’ sculptures feature on the trail. In 1997, he was commissioned alongside Julian Jeffery and Carl Payne as part of a collaborative project to create a bronze sculpture of footballing legend, Sir Stanley Matthews. This stunning sculpture takes pride of place outside Stoke City's ground – the Britannia Stadium. The sculpture was commissioned in order to launch the Stanley Matthews foundation as permanent memorial to Sir Stanley Matthews.


In May 2012 The Staffordshire Saxon was unveiled. Taking inspiration from The Staffordshire Hoard, the 9ft fiberglass statue of an Anglo Saxon warrior is adorned with 17 items reproduced from the £3.6 million Dark Age treasure trove. The Staffordshire Hoard is the largest collection of Anglo-Saxon gold and silver metalwork ever found, anywhere in the world. Discovered in a field near Hammerwich in Staffordshire in July 2009, it consists of more than 3,500 items that are nearly all military. The Staffordshire Saxon is an evolving series of work that brings to life intricately designed gold swords pommels, helmet fragments and knife fittings by showing how a 7th century battle clad warrior would have looked wearing them.


His third sculpture featured on the trail is The Mayfly Throne. This was completed in conjunction with ceramic sculptor Philip Hardaker and features artwork from three local school. This steel sculpture is inspired by the lifecycle of the mayfly and can be found in one of Stoke-on-Trent’s most beautiful green spaces, Burslem Park.


Stoke-on-Trent Sculpture Trail