Shirley Brahms II - The Commission
The Studio Gallery has for the last decade shown animal
sculpture from leading U.K. sculptors at events such as
Chelsea and Hampton Court Palace flower shows, and
foremost amongst them is Rosemary Cook, whose dog figures
are as wonderful as any you will find anywhere. They are
beautifully considered portraits, all dogs personally chosen by
Rosemary from a wide selection of breeds, and all of which
magically capture the FEELING of that particular breed.
We met Wendy and John at Discover Dogs in 2004, and
they were blown away by Rosemary Cook's sculpture, and
approached us about the possibility of commissioning a
portrait of their own much-loved cairn Shirley Brahms, which
we were happy to arrange. And although Rosemary does few
personal commissions these days, having met Shirley Brahms,
she was as excited about the commission as we were, and as
you can see from the photos, the results were breathtaking.
The sculpture is simply brilliant, and has captured Shirley’s
The sculpture of Shirley Brahms is cast in bronze or bronze
resin, and, as is increasingly the case with Rosemary Cook's
dogs, are highly collectable. In bronze resin Shirley comes in
a Limited Edition of 99 and costs £795.00. Shirley can also
be cast in bronze and costs £3975.00. If you would like
photos, or more information on the Studio Gallery and
Rosemary Cook's work, please call us on 01934 713380.
Shirley Brahms II - The Artist's Impression
Silky blonde hair, bright eyes shining
through a tangled fringe and a zest for
life that speaks volumes for a busy, fun
packed, chaotic life. No, I'm talking
about the pooch, not the owner! (though
the description could be ascribed to
My imagination was caught when the
idea of sculpting a portrait of Wendy
Richard's cairn terrier, Shirley Brahms II,
was put to me. I don't usually work to commission but in this
instance I couldn't resist what sounded like a thoroughly fun
project. Cairns are feisty little dogs with bags of personality and
it is the personality of the subject which is at the very core of my
work and which interests me most.
I arranged to visit Wendy and John and we immediately fell into
easy talk. Shirley sat next to us, relaxed and happy - a natural
model if ever there was one. She was a perfect subject for one
of my sculptures and I couldn't wait to start. I was keen to see her
at play so we set off for Hyde Park where Shirley immediately
met up with a couple of her regular dog friends. She had struck
me from first meeting as a happy, confidant little dog with a
sweet and loving nature. The comfortable manner in which she
accepted the photo shoot was a testimony to her happy home
life. She held the pose I had chosen for her and I was able to get
some excellent studies.
Back in the studio the work progressed smoothly. Shirley's out
going nature made itself apparent as I modelled the clay. It is
always fascinating to see the character of the dog emerge and
I had the positive feeling that I was capturing the subject in just
the way I had hoped.
I am glad to report that both Wendy and John are thrilled with
the result and declared that I had caught Shirley's likeness to a
T. I hope that her many fans will agree!
The Kennel Club Crufts exhibition called "Discover Dogs" is held
each year in Earl's Court in November, and, true to it's name,
you can find almost every breed under the sun there, with row
after row of enthusiastic dog lovers, proudly showing off their
pets. If you need information on which dog to choose for your
own family, Discover Dogs is a great forum for finding out,
whether your fancy is for rare and exotic breeds or simply dear
old spaniels and labradors.
Download the PDF with this information by clicking here.
Note: Shirley's name is misspelled as Susie in this document
Download a short movie clip in which you can see the sculpture from all sides by clicking on the picture below (1.25 MB, wmv movie file):