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Trinity Leeds 2015, 2nd Anniversary tour

Briggate Minerva, Trinity Leeds.

March 2015.
Scottish sculptor, Andy Scott, was commissioned to design and manufacture this sculpture entitled the ‘Briggate Minerva’ by the developer of Trinity Leeds, Land Securities. She stands in Briggate, at the main entrance to Trinity Leeds, and wears a flowing robe in the classical style. Minerva was the roman goddess of wisdom, learning, art crafts and industry. She presents a length of cloth draped over her outstretched arms, a symbol of the successful cloth manufacturing and tailoring industry that thrived in Leeds for centuries. On her head she wears a theatrical mask depicting an owl. The bird associated with wisdom is a symbol of Minerva but the owl is also represented in the Leeds coat-of-arms and is a well-known emblem in the city. The Leeds owls first appeared in 1626 when the Royal Charter of Charles I incorporated the Borough of Leeds in the County of York. They were part of the coat-of-arms of Sir John Savile (1556–1630), MP for Yorkshire, who was elected first Alderman of the first Corporation of the Borough. The theatrical style of mask alludes to the strong tradition of theatre, opera and dance in Leeds. The three stars Minerva holds in her palm are from the coat-of-arms of Sir Thomas Danby who was the first ever Mayor of Leeds between 1661 and 1662. Andy Scott also designed and made the huge sculpture of a packhorse, Equus Altus, which commands a birds-eye view from on high in Trinity Leeds. The works were completed over a period of ten months and were installed in the March of 2013 in readiness for the Easter opening of the new centre.

Briggate Minerva, Trinity Leeds.
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