Appeal launched to find lost Sheffield steel sculpture

The artwork in Sheffield which has gone missing.
The artwork in Sheffield which has gone missing.
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A new campaign has been launched to track down an unusual piece of public art that “went missing” shortly after it was commissioned in Sheffield.

Historic England, previously known as English Heritage, has included the ‘Work for Arundel Gate’ sculpture on a list of 37 pieces of public art that have either been destroyed, sold, lost or stolen since the Second World War.

The organisation said the piece was commissioned by the Peter Stuyvesant Foundation City Sculpture Project for Sheffield in 1972 and created by Kenneth Martin.

The 19ft high free standing column was comprised of abstract squares made from welded steel and painted blue.

It stood for a while in a site between a motorway flyover and a new polytechnic building close to the city centre - but what happened to it since remains a mystery.

Historic England is now appealing for members of the public who may know what happened to the sculpture or have pictures of it to come forward.

It is part of an awareness raising campaign which warns that England’s post-war public art - created by some of the most important artists of the last century - is “disappearing before the public’s eyes.”

The appeal was launched on December 15 to mark exactly ten years since a two-tonne Henry Moore sculpture was stolen from Hertfordshire before being melted down and sold for scrap metal.

Duncan Wilson, chief executive of Historic England, said: “Part of England’s national collection of public artworks is disappearing before our eyes.

“What we do know is that this art work was commissioned and created for everyone to enjoy, and it should remain accessible to all. We’re making efforts to protect the best examples of Post-War public art that still exist, and make sure that it continues to enhance the public realm.”

Historic England is hoping to feature any recovered pieces in an art exhibition entitled ‘Out There: Our Post-War Public Art’ at Somerset House in London between February 3 and April 10.

Anyone with information can email OutThere@historicengland.org.uk