Arthur Dooley studio
By Paul Coslett
A new home is being sought for Liverpool Academy of Arts which contains the untouched studio of the late local sculptor Arthur Dooley.
A studio used by Liverpool sculptor Arthur Dooley which has stayed untouched since his death is at the centre of a campaign to gain more recognition for his work.
Dooley’s studio is at the Liverpool Academy of Arts on Seel Street, the lease on the building expires in 2008 and the Academy is looking for a new home.
Arthur Dooley who died in 1994 was an apprentice welder in Birkenhead before he became a sculptor. He attended St Martin’s College in London in 1953, working to begin with as a cleaner, and held his first exhibition in 1962.
His most famous sculpture is his tribute to the Beatles in Mathew Street which depicts the Madonna and the Beatles with the enscription ‘Four lads who shook the world’ beneath.
Inside Arthur Dooley's studio
Alan Johnstone from the Liverpool Academy of Arts remembers the atmosphere in the studio when Dooley used it “Nothing was in order. Everything was a mess and on the few occasions that we tried to tidy the room up for him he used to get quite annoyed because he knew where everything was he said. He didn’t really but he always said he did.
“He just liked this jumble. He used to be able to create in here.”
During the 1960’s Dooley was a frequent sight on TV screens, often along with his blast furnace. He was even the subject of This Is Your Life.
Sculpture at Methodist Church in Toxteth
Arthur Dooley made many religious works including They include the Risen Christ in Liverpool’s Metropolitan Cathedral, The Resurrection of Christ at Princes Park Methodist Church in Toxteth and a Madonna and Child at St Faith’s Church in Crosby.
A member of the Communist Party, Dooley designed and sculpted a memorial to 65 men from Glasgow who died fighting in the Spanish Civil War. The work ‘La Pasionara’ stands at Custom House Quay in Glasgow.
In 2003 Arthur Dooley was voted number 35 in the BBC’s list of Greatest Merseysiders.
last updated: 26/02/2008 at 12:10