Unger & Schulze Crucifixion Mosaic
listed Grade II by English Heritage
Congratulations to the artists who created this great mosaic
There follow excerpts from the official declaration:-
St. Jude's Church, Wigan, Lancashire WN3 5JE, England
Grade: II Date first listed: 26-Apr-2013
Roman Catholic Church. 1964-5 by L A G Prichard & Son. Reinforced concrete frame, pinkish bricks. Dalle de verre glass by Robin Riley. Mosaic crucifixion by Hans Unger and Eberhard Schulze.
REASONS FOR DESIGNATION The Roman Catholic Church of St Jude, Wigan, of 1964-5, is listed at Grade II for the following principal reasons:
Planning: the fan-shaped design of the church shows considerable finesse in the planning of the religious space to unite the congregation and priest in a manner that firmly places the Eucharist literally and spiritually at the centre of worship as encouraged by the Liturgical Movement and subsequently endorsed by the Second Vatican Council (1962-5)
Interior: the building has a powerful and expressive design using a radiating framework of deeply-protruding, exposed concrete beams infilled with warm brick and polished boarding ceiling, the spatial focus being upon the sanctuary of pure white marble, lit from above and offset by the large Crucifixion mosaic on the rear wall.
Artistic embellishment: the church is notably enriched by high-quality contemporary artwork, particularly the large mosaic crucifixion by Hans Unger and Eberhard Schulze, the tactile richness of the Expressionist design imbuing the sanctuary with a religious intensity, and also the full-height symbolic panels of vibrant dalle de verre glass designed in a swirling abstract manner by Robin Riley…
…Above the altar is a large mosaic crucifixion 5 m x 2.7 m (17ft x 9 ft) designed by Hans Unger and created by mosaic artist, Eberhard Schulze. This was the pair's first large-scale religious mural, but they had previously worked together on mosaics for London Transport. The mosaic combined glass tesserae, smalti (opaque glass handcrafted in Venice), and larger ceramic tiles specially made in their studio. These were set into a pliable mixture of dark-coloured cement on a base of marine plywood covered with expanded metal.
See also our Feature article Christ on the Cross,
and visit the St Jude's Church website at http://www.stjude-wigan.org.uk/