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Daughter of legendary artist donates works to Nuneaton Museum & Art Gallery

Published on Wednesday, 21st December 2022

Caroline Hall presents her father's artwork to the museum

Edward Hellawell’s daughter Caroline Hall has gifted some artworks by this talented artist.

As the popular Edward Hellawell exhibition comes to an end at Nuneaton Museum & Art Gallery the team is delighted that his daughter has donated some artworks.

The works include three sculptures - a wrought iron cockerel, a carved boy in wood, and a horse and jockey made from plastic-wood. Caroline has also donated two of Hellawell’s paintings, and prospectuses for the Nuneaton School of Art for the years 1952 to 1966.

Edward Hellawell (1914-1983) was a student at the Royal College of Art, London in the 1930s. He was appointed Head of the Nuneaton School of Art in 1952. 

As well as making changes to the curriculum and teaching of the school, his first large project was to lead the Art School in creating decorations for the Coronation - both for the Town Hall and surrounding streets.

Edward also led the school as it vacated its home from the museum and art gallery building to its new home on Coton Road.  He left Nuneaton School of Art in 1966.

Over the course of his career, Edward was a painter, sculptor, graphic designer, and teacher.  He also ran a puppet theatre.

Edward was perhaps most famous for a piece of public art that he was commissioned to make by Nuneaton Urban District Council in 1960.  The statue was called ‘The Wrestlers’ and showed two nude males.

It was created for a space in Bond Street to replace the Boer War memorial which was being moved to Riversley Park.

Almost immediately there were complaints from some local people as the sculpture depicted nudity and at one point it was discussed whether the wrestlers should wear shorts! The sculpture was eventually removed in 1970 after vandalism and weather damage.

Visitors to the recent exhibition of Edward Hellawell’s work commented:

What a great talent Edward had. Excellently presented.''

“Well done – more please!”

“Nuneaton has always had such talented Art Lecturers to inspire the young.”

Edward’s sculptures join artworks by fellow Nuneaton School of Art teachers, Miles Sharp and Geoff Yeomans in the Museum collection.

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