Worlds of Faith: Sculpture and Faith at St Paul’s Cathedral, c.1796–1916

International Conference

mosaic of 24 square -formatted sculptural details in different media, including marble, brass and bronze.

Date: Tuesday 6 July 2021
Time: 10:00–16:45 BST
Place: online via Zoom

The Pantheons project’s first conference was concerned with the intersections of sculpture and various world religions at the cathedral between 1796 and 1916.

The conference took the form of four respondent presentations followed by three panel discussions.

These panel discussions were based on questions arising from short, ten-minute presentations by the panellists, available to watch in the week before the day of the conference.

The series of eighteen presentations were object-focused, on individual monuments or small, related groups of monuments, by key scholars in the field as well as clergy. The presentations fell under one of three themes: Empires of Faith: Hinduism, Buddhism, Judaism, Islam, Sikhism; Sculpting the Bible; and The Victorian Church. Conference attendees were invited to email questions for the speakers, arising from their presentations, and these questions formed the basis of the panel discussions at the conference.

The conference itself took place on Tuesday 6 July. It began with a respondents’ panel of invited speakers, followed by three round-table panels for each of the three themes, which included responses to questions posed by attendees.


10:30: Welcome: Dr Paula Gooder (Chancellor, St Paul’s Cathedral)

10:40–11:45 – Respondents’ Panel

Chair: Prof. Jason Edwards (University of York)

  • Prof. Caroline Vout (University of Cambridge)
  • Prof. Simon Goldhill (University of Cambridge)
  • Prof. Partha Mitter (University of Sussex)
  • Prof. Dominic Janes (Keele University)

11:45–12:00 – Break

12:00–13:00 – Panel 1: Empires of Faith: Hinduism, Buddhism, Judaism, Islam, Sikhism

Chair: Prof. Jason Edwards (University of York)

  • Dr Sarah Monks: John Bacon Sr. and John Bacon Jr., William Jones (completed 1799)
  • Dr Greg Sullivan (University of York/St Paul’s Cathedral): Sir Francis Leggat Chantrey, Bishop Reginald Heber (post 1826) and John G. Lough, Bishop Thomas Fanshaw Middleton (1832)
  • Dr Cora Gilroy-Ware (University of York): Carlo Marochetti, Captain Granville Gower Loch (1853)
  • Dr Maddie Boden (Ashmolean Museum/University of York): Hart, Son, Peard & Co., Monument to Men Massacred in the Sinai Desert (1882)
  • Katrina-Eve Manica (University of York): Joseph E. Boehm, Major General Charles George Gordon (post 1887)

13:00–14:00 – Lunch Break

14:00–15:00 – Panel 2: Sculpting the Bible

Chair: Dr Amy Harris (University of York/St Paul’s Cathedral)

  • Dr Kate Nichols (University of Birmingham): William F. Woodington, Genesis (1862)
  • Dr Michaela Giebelhausen (The Courtauld Institute of Art): William F. Woodington, Gospel of St Luke (1862)
  • Prof. Jason Edwards (University of York): William Calder Marshall, Book of Job (1863)
  • Dr Marjorie Coughlan (University of York): William Calder Marshall, Gospel of St Matthew (1863)
  • Prof. Jason Edwards (University of York): William Calder Marshall, Righteousness and Peace (1863)

15:00–15:30 – Break

15:30–16:30 – Panel 3: The Victorian Church

Chair: Dr Greg Sullivan (University of York)

  • Rev. Prof. William Whyte (University of Oxford): George Richmond, Bishop Charles James Blomfield (post 1857)
  • Rev. Prof. Peter Howarth (Queen Mary, University of London): Francis John Williamson, Dean Henry Milman (1876)
  • Dr Amy Harris (University of York/St Paul’s Cathedral): Henry Hugh Armstead, Reverend Benjamin Webb (c. 1885-1890)
  • Dr Jasmine Allen (The Stained Glass Museum, Ely): James Powell, Bishop Robert Billing (post 1898)
  • Dr Imogen Hart (University of California, Berkeley): James Powell, Bishop Mandell Creighton (1901)
  • Dr Michelle Foot (Edinburgh College of Art): Henry Pegram, Sir John Stainer (1903)
  • Rev. Dr Ayla Lepine (King’s College, University of Cambridge): Frederick W. Pomeroy, Bishop Frederick Temple (1905)

16:30: Conclusion and Closing Remarks: Prof. Jason Edwards (University of York)

The conference gave rise to a special edition of the Journal of Victorian Sculpture: ‘Round Table: Sculpture and Faith at St Paul’s Cathedral, c. 1796–1914’ (vol. 28:1, January 2023).