Wednesday, January 09, 2008

I went to the National Gallery to check out the mock-ups of the short-list of entrants for the next round of exhibitions for the Fourth Plinth. It is somewhat of a mixed bag.

Fourth Plinth Project Nominees 2008 - Yinka Shonibare, 'Nelson’s Ship in a Bottle' Yinka Shonibare's 'Nelson's Ship in a Bottle' is probably my least favourite of the offerings, though I can't say exactly what it is I dislike about it, possibly it's kitschness. If it were made I'd be interested to see how they construct such a large ship in a bottle.
Tracey Emin's 'Something for the Future' has been getting some "OMG! Meerkats! Am Ded From Cyute!" reactions from people who have seen pictures but I find that while I like it I wouldn't want it as a Fourth Plinth, not least for it not addressing the space in any way, the rest of it being kept empty and the Meerkats themselves being quite small.
Fourth Plinth Project Nominees 2008 - Tracey Emin's Meerkats, 'Something for the Future'
Fourth Plinth Project Nominees 2008- Jeremy Deller, 'The Spoils of War (Memorial for an Unknown Civilian)' Jeremy Deller's 'The Spoils of War' bores me with it's crushing obviousness and is in with a chance if the judge's for the Fourth Plinth react to mentions of the Iraq War in the same way that Oscars judges do to an actor playing someone dying of a terminal disease.
I do like the idea of Antony Gormley's 'One And Another', where the exhibit is the people of London standing up there for an hour. I suspect H&S concerns will scupper this one though. It is quite high.
My favourite two though are 'Faîtes L’Art, pas La Guerre (Make Art, Not War)' by Bob and Roberta Smith, a solar/wind powered electric light display (though I must admit, it does feel, looking at the model, as though it should do something else, one side and the back are bare of activity),
Fourth Plinth Project Nominees 2008 - Bob & Roberta Smith, 'Faîtes L’Art, pas La Guerre (Make Art, Not War)'
Fourth Plinth Project Nominees 2008 - Anish Kapoor, 'Sky Plinth' and Anish Kapoor's 'Sky Plinth', with it's large reflective dishes.

There are cards at the National Gallery for people to express their opinions as to which are their favourite, or they can use the website. Regardless of which gets picked the Evening Standard will complain so the job is half-done.

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