Central to Remembrance Day in the UK is Lutyens’ masterly and geometrically subtle Cenotaph in Whitehall, the name meaning – empty sepulchre’, a funerary monument representing all the dead. This centenary year of the outbreak of the First World War, there has also been great popular appreciation of the work in the moat of the Tower of London, ‘Blood Swept Lands and Seas of Red’ by artist Paul Cummins with setting by stage designer Tom Piper. This simple but powerful and vivid concept – to gradually fill the moat with 888,246 ceramic poppies, one for each British fatality during that war – has become famous worldwide. Achieving lasting success with a monument is not easy. They can take many forms from the figurative to the abstract: one of the most enduring techniques is the stark list of names, but sometimes something more instinctive, even accidental, has equal or greater impact. Here, in no particular order, Hugh Pearman presents his personal selection of 10 memorials, some better known than others, that he considers among the best.
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