London Mayor Sadiq Khan has unveiled the artwork that will replace David Shrigley’s seven-metre tall thumbs up on Trafalgar Square’s Fourth Plinth.
THE END by artist Heather Phillipson consists of a dollop of whipped cream decorated with a cherry, fly and drone.
It is designed to speak to the “extremes of shared experience, from commemorations and celebrations to mass protests, all while being observed by a drone’s camera.”
“When I conceived of THE END, I wanted to take into account both the political and physicals aspects of Trafalgar Square and the plinth. Topped with a giant, unstable load of replica whipped cream, a cherry, a fly and a functioning drone, the plinth becomes a monument to hubris and impending collapse,” Phillipson said.
“I’m honoured to have been selected to make work for such a significant public site, and to be able to see THE END scaled up for its ultimate size and context – one in which the surrounding architecture and its population are participants in a mis-scaled landscape, magnifying the banal, and our cohabitation with other lifeforms, to apocalyptic proportions.”
THE END will be displayed in Trafalgar Square in 2020, preceded in 2018 by a sculpture from Michael Rakowitz’ The Invisible Enemy Should Not Exist series, which has seen him attempt to recreate 7,000 objects looted from the Iraq Museum and destroyed. The plinth sculpture is a nod to the winged god statue that was demolished by ISIS.
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