In the frame

Gillian Wearing’s Suffragist statue commemorates revolutionary women—and a smattering of men

Gillian Wearing with a model of her Suffragist statue Photograph: Caroline Teo/GLA/PA

Gillian Wearing has spilled the beans on her Suffragist statue which will be unveiled in Parliament Square, London, in April. The sculpture shows the Suffragist leader Millicent Fawcett holding a sign with a quotation from a 1913 speech she gave after the death of Suffragist Emily Wilding Davison (“Courage calls to Courage Everywhere”). In a surprise twist, 52 women—and a handful of men—will be depicted on a series of photographic etchings wrapped around the Fawcett work. The men include the playwright Laurence Housman who was a founder member of the Men’s League for Women’s Suffrage, a society formed in 1907; Reverend Claude Hinscliff, the driving force behind the Church League for Women’s Suffrage, also features. “I wanted the monument to be as inclusive as possible and to reflect that many women were involved in progressing the rights of equality, some of whom have never been publicly recognised,” Wearing told The Guardian. A range of events funded by the UK government celebrate the centenary of female suffrage and the passing of the Representation of the People Act 1918, which gave some women the vote for the first time.