The Bull

Twice life size bronze sculpture by Laurence Broderick
Centrepiece for the new Bullring Birmingham.

Opened 4th September 2003 to a crowd of 279,000 people!

Sculptor Laurence Broderick's 6 tonne bronze bull stands as a 2.2m high symbol of Bullring's importance to Birmingham. The twice life size sculpture - which takes the form of a massive bull turning in motion - greets visitors as they enter the main gateway to Bullring, just off Rotunda Square. Commissioned to herald Birmingham's regeneration, and to represent its history, the Bull has been adopted by the people of Birmingham as a 21st Century mascot. One of the largest bronze animal sculptures in the UK, the piece is modelled on the Hereford Bull, an animal with strong historical associations to Birmingham. A commemorative plaque was unveiled to celebrate Bullring's - and the bull's- first birthday. The plaque, located at the foot of the bull, reads "The bronze bull unveiled on the opening of Bullring on 4 September '03 was sculpted by Laurence Broderick. Commissioned to celebrate the past and future of Bullring and Birmingham, the bull has become the recognised symbol of the city and the adopted mascot of its citizens."

The enlargement process was carried out by casting a model of the bull in plaster from the original maquette mould, and then slicing it (like a loaf of bread). Each slice was measured and calculations were made to enlarge each slice. The new dimensions were projected onto sheets of polystyrene of the scaled-up thickness. The outline of the image was marked out and the waste cut away. The enlarged slices were then stuck together and shaped using files. Layers of fibreglass, resin and plaster followed. The finer details were added before the finished Bull was smoothed down and polished, ready for sandcasting.