The Leviathan

Known locally as the 'Barbican Prawn' (it even has its own Twitter account!) the Leviathan represents a variety of fish and sea creatures. The sculpture is made up of a cormorant’s feet, a plesiosaurus’s tail, the fin of a John Dory, a lobster’s claws and the head of an angler fish.

The Leviathan in situArtist: Brian Fell
Category: Permanent
Date: 1999
Location: View on our Public Art Map [desktop and tablet; requires Google sign-in]
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Plymouth City Council, Arts Partnership Ltd
Supporters: Arts Council England

Project Description

Photograph of the plaques at the base of the Leviathan

The Leviathan is a well-known local landmark, sitting 33ft above the Barbican’s West Pier, a majestic symbol of the sea life of Plymouth. The pole supporting the sculpture is decorated with plaques containing descriptions of specific fish, birds etc, adding more detail to this rich and diverse marine environment.

‘Leviathan’ is a biblical sea monster with immense size and power. The sculpture was created by one of the country’s leading metalworkers Brian Fell, in conjunction with Gordon Young’s design for the Waterfront Walkway trial; also commissioned as part of the Barbican Public Art Programme from Art Partnership Limited.

Photograph of The Leviathan sculpture on Plymouth's Barbican.