Alan Turing sculpture approved by Council

Alan Turing in his class photo at King's in 1931

King’s is very pleased to announce that Cambridge City Council has granted planning permission for the College to install a sculpture in commemoration of one of its most notable students and fellows – the mathematician, cryptographer and pioneer in computing, Alan Turing. Designed by the distinguished sculptor Sir Antony Gormley and to be funded by a donation, the sculpture will be an abstract figure made in corten steel blocks, designed to turn a warm rust colour over time. At some distance from the Chapel, it will nestle at a confluence of paths by the College library on the route used by University members and Cambridge residents to cross to The Backs. The College is developing further plans to encourage members of the public and young people to enjoy this major work of art and to reflect on the life of Alan Turing, the appalling treatment he faced as a result of his sexuality, and the role his work has played in shaping the modern world.

Provost of King’s, Professor Michael Proctor, commented:

From the papers he published at Cambridge which are now recognised as the foundation of computer science, through his vital code-breaking work at Bletchley Park during the Second World War which is credited with the saving of countless lives, to his exploration of the idea of artificial intelligence, the importance of Alan Turing and his impact on our world are hard to overestimate. It was in the College’s tolerant, open-minded and intellectual environment that Turing was able to live a fulfilled life both as a homosexual man and an abstract thinker, and we are enormously proud to acknowledge the significance of his unparalleled contribution to science and modern computing in this way. We hope the sculpture will be a great source of interest and pleasure to many.


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