Hew Locke | Reimagining the Queen Victoria Statue | Birmingham City Centre

Hales is delighted to announce Hew Locke will transform a sculpture of Queen Victoria in the centre of Birmingham in conjunction with the Birmingham 2022 Festival culture programme linked to the Commonwealth Games. 


The project, known as Foreign Exchange, is organised by Ikon Gallery in Birmingham and work will begin on 14 June 2022. 


The marble figure of Queen Victoria that Locke will work on is by Sir Thomas Brock. It was unveiled in 1901 and then recast in bronze by William Bloye and members of Birmingham Art School in 1951. Locke's vision is to create "an object of veneration, leading a battalion of other statues to represent the home nation throughout the Empire", an Ikon statement says. 


Locke has focused on problematic statuary over the past two decades, producing photographs of contentious sculptures adorned in contemporary regalia. In 2017, he described his "statue-dressing" proposal, outlining his "impossible proposals" for decorating historic monuments. For an exhibition at PPOW gallery in New York in 2018, Locke re-imagined statues of Christopher Columbus and George Washington. 




Hew Locke

Foreign Exchange




Learn more here

March 10, 2022