If you are visiting Bristol, my own favourite woodcarving highlights to try and see are:
The sixteenth century misericords in Bristol cathedral
The eighteenth century carvings from Thomas Paty's workshop, in Redland Chapel
The Grinling Gibbons oak overmantle in Bristol library
The oak rooms in the Red Lodge, from the late sixteenth century
In this post, I'd like to share another treasure. It is the Canynges fireplace in the Bristol Savage's wigwam.
The Bristol Savages are a society of artists and musicians who meet in the 'wigwam', an impressive building in the garden of the Red Lodge in Bristol.
|Image from http://brisray.com/bristol/bukpcards41.htm|
The design of the wigwam is loosely based on a Gloucestershire tithe barn. It was designed by a member of the Savages named C.F.W. Dening, and became their official meeting place in April 1920.
Although it is not generally open to the public, on Open Doors days non-members can go inside the wigwam and see the collection of strange and fascinating artefacts. That is how I came to see the impressive carved fireplace that is the subject of this post.
According to an information board next to the fireplace, it originally stood in Canynge's House in Bristol. When that building was demolished in the 1930's, a member of the Savages named Eddie Welch rescued this fireplace and gave it to them.
|Image from http://jot101ok.blogspot.co.uk/2013/09/a-devastated-bookshop.html|
William Canynge the Younger (b. 1400-d. 1474) gave a lot of money to St Mary Redcliffe church in Bristol and his merchant's mark can still be seen carved or painted on many places in the church, as well as his heraldic shield (showing three moor's heads) and also statues of Canynge himself.
|Image from http://stmaryredcliffe.co.uk/files/2014/08/St-Mary-Redcliffe-NW-tower-vaulting-report-revised-assembled-reduced.pdf|