1. James Watt Centre
i James Watt
On a red sandstone plinth is the seated figure of James Watt, who has been celebrated as a role model for students since the earliest days of the Edinburgh School of Arts. This statue was made for the University's predecessor, the Watt Institution and School of Arts, by Peter Slater, who taught ornamental modelling there. In 1854 students and staff celebrated all night and formed the Watt Club – now the oldest graduate association in the UK. Originally displayed outside the Watt Institution Adam Square, the statue was moved first to Heriot Watt College in Chambers Street, then in 1990 to its current position. The plinth under the statue contains a time capsule.
ii Stained Glass Window above the entrance to the James Watt Centre
This window by Shona McInnes was commissioned for the James Watt Centre which opened in 1990. Viewed from outside, in front of the entrance, the roundels represent the following subjects: top: engineering; bottom: science; left: economics and social studies; right: environmental studies.
iii The Busts of Leonard Horner and George Heriot.
At the entrance to the Museum are sandstone busts of two great heroes of Heriot-Watt's history: Leonard Horner (1785-1865), educational and social reformer, who founded the trailblazing Edinburgh School of Arts in 1821; and George Heriot (1563-1634), goldsmith and banker to King James VI, who left his riches to fund education in Edinburgh. In 1885 the George Heriot Trust merged with the Watt Institution to form Heriot-Watt College.
The busts were displayed on the façade of our former Chambers Street building for over a century until 1989, when the University left the building during its move to Riccarton.
iv The Body
To the left of the main Reception is a steel pillar which was bought in 1993 by the University, from its creator William Edmonds, a third-year sculpture student at Edinburgh College of Art, then an associated college of Heriot-Watt University.