Monday, March 9, 2015

BEAUTY: Sculpture--Hans Haacke

There are four plinths surrounding Trafalgar Square in London and three of them hold statues of male figures of great social and political import in Great Britain. But the fourth plinth never received its intended statue, that of William IV on horseback, due to insufficient funds. For over 150 years, the fate of the plinth was debated and finally in 1998, it was agreed by the Royal Society for the Encouragement of Arts, Manufactures and Commerce (RSA) and the Mayor of London’s Fourth Plinth Commission that the plinth would be home to a rotating exhibition of art pieces. Over the years, there have been many fascinating and sometimes controversial sculptures on the spot by such illustrious artists as Sir Antony Gormley and Marc Quinn.

And this past week, the newest sculptural piece for the fourth plinth was revealed. It is Gift Horse by German artist Hans Haacke, a sculpture of a horse skeleton tied with a ribbon. Not only is it a clever reference to the original sculpture that was supposed to be there over 150 years ago, it is also a comment on power and wealth since the ribbon is actually a live electronic ticker of the London Stock Exchange. Sculptures normally remain on the plinth for a year or more. If you are in London any time soon, stop by and see it...


jillbee said...

Hi I'm designing a website for a fine metalworker who did the bow for this sculpture. We were wondering if you'd give us permission to use come of your photos of Gift Horse for our online portfolio. We'd happily credit with a link back to your site if you'd give us permission to use them. Best regards, Jill

Jeff said...

Hi Jill,

These images are not mine. I culled them from different sources on the net.

Good luck,