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British bronze sculpture founders and plaster figure makers, 1800-1980 - L

An online resource, launched in 2011, selectively updated twice yearly. Last updated March 2020. Contributions are welcome, to Jacob Simon at volunteerjsimon@npg.org.uk.

Introduction Resources and bibliography

Bronze sculpture founders: a short history Plaster figure makers: a short history

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Daniele Landi, 1 Leather Lane, London EC 1881-1902, 36 Charles St, Hatton Garden EC 1903-1925. Plaster cast figure maker, moulder and modeller.

Daniel Landi (c.1838-1925) married Agnes Walker in 1860 at St Philip Bethnal Green, when he was described as a moulder, age 21, of 10 Collingwood St, with his father named as Charles Landi, also a moulder. In censuses, Daniel Landi was listed in 1861 at 101 Leather Lane as a moulder and figure maker, age 22, with wife Agnes, a mourning flower maker, and in 1871 at 38 Charles St, Saffron Hill, as a moulder, age 32, with wife Agnes.

In 1880 Landi took over premises at 1 Leather Lane, which had been occupied by Domenico Brucciani (qv) until his death earlier the same year, raising the possibility that Landi had managed these branch premises for Brucciani. Landi was recorded at this address in subsequent censuses, in 1881 as a moulder and modeller, age 42, born Lucca, with mother Maria and sister Agnes, age 38, born Clerkenwell, and in 1891 and 1901 as a modeller. He was at 36 Charles St in the 1911 census, described as a plaster merchant, age 73, trading on his own account at home. He died in 1925, age 87, in the Holborn district. In a notice concerning his estate, he was described as an architectural modeller (London Gazette 16 February 1926). He left effects worth £1919, with probate granted to Oswald Valli, dealer, and Raffaelo Tomei, architectural modeller.

A son or grandson of the same name appears to have continued the business and was pehaps the Daniel Landi who was named in 1919 as the source for a ‘head of Gibson's Venus’ (British Journal of Photography, vol.66,‎ 1919, p.44). Daniel Landi can be found trading at 106 Talbot Road, W.11, c.1932-73.

Romolo Landi (c.1840-1883), another figure maker and moulder, was presumably Daniel’s brother. When he married in 1862, Romolo was described as living at 37 Charles St, with his father, named as Charles Landi, gentleman. He was trading from 140 New Cross Road by 1869 until 1881. In the 1881 census, Romolo Landi was listed as an inmate at Kent County Asylum, Maidstone, where he died in 1883, age 43 (information from Peter Malone). Whether connected or not to Daniel Landi, it is worth noting that a Florence Landi married Enrico Cantoni (qv) in 1888.

Sources: Information kindly supplied by Peter Malone from directory and census records.

Romolo Landi, see Daniele Landi

*William Larson, north side of Piccadilly (between Sackville St and Swallow St), London 1670 to 1692. Sculptor and bronze founder.

Outside the time frame of this online resource but see Roscoe 2009 and Sullivan 2005 p.32, on whom this summary depends. William Larson junr (d.1692) was the son of William Larson senr, an Anglo-Dutch carver, who bequeathed him his 'plaister moulds and brass moulds whatsoever’. Larson junr was responsible for making and casting an equestrian statue in cannon brass of James II for Newcastle-upon-Tyne, commissioned 1686, completed 1688, destroyed by 1695.

Livingstone Art Moulders by 1979-1984 or later, Livingstone Art Founders from 1986. At Bexley 1975, Ryde House, Short Lane, Brenchley, Kent by 1979-1984, Maidstone Road, Matfield, Tonbridge, Kent TN12 7LQ from 1986. Art founders.

The following account is based on information kindly supplied by Walter ('Wally') Livingstone, May 2010. Apprenticed to John Galizia & Son (qv) in 1955 at the age of 15, Livingstone was employed by the business for ten years before setting up independently as Livingstone Art Moulders in the mid-1970s. He then worked freelance for Galizia, Fiorini & Carni (qv) and Meridian Bronze (qv), supplying them with moulds and waxes.

Livingstone’s business was initially located in Bexley, before it moved out of London to larger premises at Brenchley in Kent and then to nearby Matfield. There it employs seven people, two of whom for nearly 30 years. Livingstone’s eldest son, Simon, has worked at the foundry since 2004.

Livingstone Art Founders’ business card, dating to about 1991, ornamented with a profile of John Skeaping's Workhorse, characterised the business as ‘a small Art Foundry. Specialists in The "Lost Wax" process of Bronze Casting in the traditional Plaster and grog investment and Ceramic Shell coatings' (example in National Portrait Gallery records, RP 6163).

Works in bronze: The client list provided by Wally Livingstone, May 2010, includes Clive Barker, Steven Cox, Philip Jackson, Philip King, Eduardo Paolozzi, Tessa Pullan, John Skeaping and Ian Walters. The foundry’s website, at January 2011, also features the work of Maurice Blik, Gill Brown, Kate Denton, Mo Farquharson, Graham High and William Turnbull.

Skeaping used Wally Livingstone as the last in a succession of foundries to cast his later work: Fiorini & Carney (qv), c.1962-4, John Galizia (qv), c.1965-70, Meridian Bronze (qv), c.1970-6 and Livingstone, c.1977-8 (see A Retrospective Exhibition of Bronze Sculptures by John Skeaping, R.A., exh. cat., Arthur Ackermann & Son Ltd, 1979). Livingstone cast his statuette, Workhorse, 1978 (example, numbered 9/15, Woolley & Wallis, Salisbury, 25 March 2009 lot 251), and five bronzes which Paul Mellon presented to the Fitzwilliam Museum in 1982: Racing Greyhounds and Cats Playing, both 1977, and Work Horse, Pointer and Tiger, all three 1978 (Fitzwilliam Museum Annual Report, 1982, p.21, pl.xxiv).

Examples of the foundry’s work (*information from Wally Livingstone) include Ian Walters’ Memorial to the International Brigade, 1984-5 (Lambeth, The Queen’s Walk, see Public Sculpture of South London, p.82) and his statue, Fenner Brockway, 1985 (*Red Lion Square), various works by Maurice Lambert, 1988 (generally editions of 6, for Belgrave Gallery's exhibition, Maurice Lambert 1901-1964, 1988, with catalogue acknowledgement to Wally Livingstone at Livingstone Art Founders), William Turnbull’s Blade Venus 2, 1989, with foundry mark (see Modern British Art, Offer Waterman & Co, catalogue, c.2009, p.24), Richard Browne's half-length figure, Dame Alicia Markova, 1961, cast 1991 (National Portrait Gallery), Maurice Blik’s Renaissance, 1992 (*East India Dock), Barry Sutton’s Macaque, 1993 (*Natural History Museum, primates exhibition) and Eduardo Paolozzi’s Newton after Blake, 1993, impressed foundry seal (with Fine Art Society, see The Twentieth Century, Fine Art Society, exh. cat., 2008, p.48), Mondrian Head, 1996 (Christie’s 21 November 2003 lot 169a) and London to Paris Maquette, 1999, impressed foundry seal (with Flowers Gallery, 2010).

Sources: Livingstone Art Founders’ website, accessed January 2011 and February 2015, at www.livingstoneartfounders.com. For abbreviations, see Resources and bibliography.

James Loft (c.1800-89), see Roscoe 2009 and Peter Sarti in this online resource

Ferdinando Lucchesi, see Fernando Meacci

Lunts Castings Ltd, Hawthorns Industrial Estate, Handsworth, Birmingham, West Midlands B21 0BJ. Fine art and sculpture foundry.

Outside the time frame of this online resource but see www.luntscastings.co.uk.

Found a mistake? Have some extra information? Who should be added to this directory? Please contact Jacob Simon at volunteerjsimon@npg.org.uk.

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