Battle of the Somme

Battle of the Somme

A miniature sculpture of a World War One soldier is currently on display in the Regimental Chapel at Chester Cathedral to commemorate the centenary of the Battle of the Somme.

British sculptor Nic Joly has placed 141 bronze figures holding poppies on 141 memorials all over the country as well as on memorials abroad.

The polished bronze figures stand 50mm tall with their red poppies. The figures are intended to simply stand somewhere on each memorial, looking out at the world, reminding us that every life lost was a golden one.

The international installation is about awareness, making people stop, remember, and think about what happened 100 years ago.  Members of the public are encouraged to go and look at the memorials that are in their locality and search out the figurines.

Nic Joly said: “The golden soldiers are out there for you to find.  Stop and look at your memorials wherever they are, and think about why they exist.”

“In my own small way I strive to create my own worlds and sculptures to ask and bring to the forefront the dilemmas and questions that we all feel and face day to day, as well as highlight the madness around us.”

Vice Dean of Chester Cathedral, Peter Howell-Jones, said: “We are very pleased to host one of Nic Joly’s sculptures and hope that people who visit the building and the chapel will find time to reflect on the centenary and all those who lost their lives.”

Members of the public who find the sculptures are encouraged to share pictures of the figures and their locations via social media.  They have already been spotted across the country – from Scotland to Lands End.

Nic Joly started his artistic career in a stained glass and metalwork workshop in the south of England. He then went on to study at The Winchester School of Art in Hampshire.  His intricate figurines are made from wire, paper and clay.

What began as Nic’s hobby has transformed into a passion for sculpting minute depictions of everyday life.