Visitors to Trafalgar Square in London are inundated with a plethora of sights, from the obvious to the obscure, like the Trafalgar Square Imperial Measurements and London’s Lilliputian Police Station. They would be forgiven for overlooking an archway of a building facade that is decorated with faces and animals.
Starting at the archway that houses the book-selling chain Waterstones on the Strand, and wrapping around a building once known as the Grand Hotel, (now just The Grand) and continuing until facing Northumberland Avenue, are a series of 13 faces. These keystone grotesques are the work of sculptor Barry Baldwin. His works can be found throughout Europe and the United Kingdom, including Buckingham Palace and Westminster Abbey.
This piece is entitled Endangered Species. It contains depictions of 70 animals at risk of extinction that have been carved out of limestone. At the top are the two figures depicting Adam and Eve bookending a central figurehead with a decidedly pensive expression and whose wristwatch is set at the eleventh hour. A keen observer will notice that the effigy of Adam is in the process of being bitten in the derrière by a snake.