Vision for the Pillars: St Andrew the fisherman

The life-size figure of Andrew the Fisherman is portrayed casting a net across the two pillars in front of the Church. The artwork creates an arch for people to pass beneath, connecting the city centre and the minster church. The design recognises Andrew’s role as a ‘fisher of people’ and that the minster is dedicated to one of Jesus’ disciples. The sculpture also highlights Plymouth’s long history as a busy fishing port.

Artist: Rodney Munday
Date: 2017
Location: View on our Public Art Map [desktop and tablet; requires Google sign-in]
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Commissioner: Parochial Church Council of the Minster Church of St Andrew, Plymouth
Partners: Plymouth City Council Arts and Heritage, Plymouth Culture, Plymouth Arts Centre,Plymouth College of Art Contemporary Craft and Film students, Flameworks, CAN (Culture and Arts Network), Plymouth City Youth Council, The Jersusalem Trust, Church Care.
Supporters:The Minster Church is thankful for the generosity of members of the parish community and the general public who supported fundraising activity and donated to the Plymouth Crowdfunding campaign.

 Project Description

In 2011, the Church of England invited parishes to apply for an award (funded by The Jerusalem Trust) for the best proposal for a new work of art in their church. The Minster Church of St Andrew shared first place and was awarded £5000. Using this initial funding the Church set about commissioning a celebratory work of art, to commemorate the long-lasting association between the minster and the city.

Following a three-stage selection process working with national and local visual arts partners the design of Andrew the Fisherman by the sculptor Rodney Munday was selected.

The life size bronze resin figure was installed with a net created from stainless steel woven mesh framed with a tubular stainless steel “rope”, patinated and finished, to match the figure.

A plaque which recognises the people who contributed to the success of a Crowfunding campaign is attached to one of the pillars and the Roll of Benefactors is displayed by the north door of the minster.

In July 2017 a special service and ceremony of dedication of the sculpture of Andrew the Fisherman was conducted by the Bishop of Plymouth, the Right Rev Nicholas McKinnel, in the presence of the Lord Mayor.

The initiative for the project came from ‘Commissioning New Art for Churches’, a guide by Church Care with clear guidelines of stage by stage development encouraging artists and churches to work together.

About the Artist

Rodney Munday is a distinguished, award-winning sculptor with a considerable reputation for his work on the human form. His practise has a focus on revealing the way in which the clay is worked, which has encouraged some to see his work in an impressionistic style. For Munday however it is important to allow space for the viewer to contemplate the piece in what some would consider a ‘near to finished’ form; therefore the work is essentially completed by whomever is the spectator, as they project their own emotions and experiences onto the work.

He has stated that in recent years, his respect for the commissioning process has increased as he has gained more public art commissions and an increased demand for his work.

“I have had to relate to and interact with not just individual but community involvement, and I have become convinced that the most valuable art is a joint creation of the artist and the society in which and for which he works.”