The Fourth Plinth Commission has announced the shortlist of artists for 2014/2015, today. The artists are: Marcus Coates, Hans Haacke, Mark Leckey, Liliane Lijn, David Shrigley and Ugo Rondinone.
The Fourth Plinth Programme is the most provocative contemporary art prize in the UK. Funded by the Mayor of London, the programme invites world class artists to make astonishing new works for the centre of the Capital City. The programme was initiated in 1998 by the RSA with the support of the Cass Sculpture Foundation. In 1999 responsibility for Trafalgar Square was transferred to the Mayor of London and the Greater London Authority.
The Fourth Plinth Programme is led by the Mayor’s Culture Team, under the guidance of the Fourth Plinth Commissioning Group (FPCG). The FPCG recommends contemporary works for the Fourth Plinth. The first commission under the FPCG was Marc Quinn’s sculpture Alison Lapper Pregnant, unveiled in a public ceremony in September 2005. It was followed by Thomas Schütte’s Model for a Hotel in 2007 and by Antony Gormley’s One & Other in 2009. Yinka Shonibare MBE’s sculpture Nelson’s Ship in a Bottle remained on the plinth until the end of January 2012 and now has a permanent home at the National Maritime Museum in Greenwich. Powerless Structures, Fig 101 by artist duo Elmgreen & Dragset was unveiled in 2012 and was replaced by Katharina Fritsch’s Hahn / Cock in July 2013. Previous commissions have been Ecce Homo by Mark Wallinger (1999), Regardless of History by Bill Woodrow (2000) and Monument by Rachel Whiteread (2001). Arts Council England has been a significant funding partner of the programme.
The six artists have been commissioned to produce maquettes of their proposed works, which will go on display at St Martin-in-the-Fields from 25 September – 17 November 2013. The two selected artists will be announced by the Mayor of London in early 2014, and their works will be unveiled in Trafalgar Square in 2015 and 2016 respectively.
The Mayor of London Boris Johnson said: ‘In a prime position in the heart of our great city, the Fourth Plinth is one of the most exciting platforms for international contemporary art. Always eagerly anticipated, it’s about cutting-edge artworks that get people talking and debating and I’ve no doubt the artists on this latest shortlist will do just that.’
Ekow Eshun, Chair of the Fourth Plinth Commissioning Group, said:
“The quality and range of this shortlist further underlines the strength of the Fourth Plinth programme, built up over successive commissions, as one of the leading public art commissions on the international cultural landscape. This is an exciting and imaginative group of proposals and the commissioning group will have a tough time choosing between them for our recommendation to the Mayor early next year. Debate is at the heart of the Fourth Plinth programme and we hope that the public will enjoy the exhibition and will share their thoughts with us.”
The Fourth Plinth Programme is the most high profile and provocative contemporary art prize in the UK. Funded by the Mayor of London it commissions world-class artists to make challenging new works for the historic heart of the capital.
Bringing out the art critic in everyone, the Fourth Plinth Programme aims to trigger public debate about contemporary art in London’s public spaces. Visitors to the shortlist exhibition will be invited to post their comments at the exhibition and via the Fourth Plinth website from 25 September.
Born 1968 in London. Lives and works in London.
Marcus Coates makes videos, performances and installations that attempt to answer questions about how we live in urban societies. He has had recent solo exhibitions at South Alberta Gallery, Canada (2012); and Milton Keynes Gallery (2010). Recent public art projects include Create London (2013) and Vision Quest: a ritual for Elephant & Castle (2012). Coates has also performed at Port Eliot Festival, Cornwall; Mori Art Museum, Tokyo; Kunsthalle Zurich; Barbican Art Gallery, London; and Hayward Gallery, London.
Born 1936 in Cologne. Lives and works in New York.
For the last four decades Hans Haacke has been examining the relationships between art, power and money, and has addressed issues of free expression and civic responsibilities in democratic societies in his work. He works in many different mediums including painting, photography and written text. He has had recent solo exhibitions at Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía, Madrid (2012); MIT List Visual Arts Centre, Cambridge, MA (2011); Specific Object, New York (2011); and Akademie der Künste, Berlin (2006). Haacke’s work has been included in four Documentas and numerous biennials around the world. He shared a Golden Lion Award with Nam June Paik for the best pavilion at the 45th Venice Biennale (1993), and in 2000 he unveiled a permanent installation in the Reichstag, Berlin.
Born 1964 in Birkenhead. Lives and works in London.
Mark Leckey’s work explores the mediated nature of public and private environments, often working collage and animation techniques into his video and sculptural work. He has had recent solo exhibitions at The Hammer museum, Los Angeles (2013); Banff Centre, Alberta (2012); Serpentine Gallery, London (2011); Abrons Art Centre, New York (2009); and Kölnischer Kunstverein, Cologne (2008). Leckey curated the Hayward Touring show ‘The universal addressability of dumb things’ (2013) and was awarded the Turner Prize in 2008.
Born 1939 in New York. Lives and works in London.
Liliane Lijn creates kinetic installations made using high-tech materials and techniques including laser cutting and space-race materials. She has had recent solo exhibitions at Museo di Santa Croce, Capolavori del Valtiberina (2013), mima, Middlesbrough (2012); Sir John Soane’s Museum (2011); Royal Academy Schools Gallery, London (2008); and Mead Gallery, Warwick (2005). Recent public commissions include Starslide, Evelina Children’s Hospital, Solar Beacon on the Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco; and Light Pyramid, commissioned by Park Trust and Milton Keynes Gallery.
David Shrigley (see top photo)
Born 1968 in Macclesfield. Lives and works in Glasgow.
David Shrigley’s work draws on the British tradition of satire, creating drawings, animations and sculptures that reflect the absurdity of contemporary society. He has had recent solo exhibitions at Bradford 1 Gallery (2013); Cornerhouse Gallery (2012), Hayward Gallery, London (2012); Yerba Beuna Centre for the Arts, San Francisco (2012); and Kelvingrove Museum, Glasgow (2010). Shrigley’s Sort of Opera: Pass the Spoon was performed at Tramway, Glasgow, and Southbank Centre, London (2011 – 12), and he has been nominated for the Turner Prize 2013.
Born 1964 in Brunnen, Switzerland. Lives and works in New York.
Ugo Rondinone is a mixed-media artist whose work explores themes of fantasy and desire. He has had recent solo exhibitions at M Museum, Leuven (2013); Art Institute of Chicago (2013); Common Guild, Glasgow (2012); Museum of Cycladic Art, Athens (2012); and Aargauer Kunsthaus, Aarau (2010). Rondinone has created public commissions for the Rockefeller Plaza, New York; the IMB Building, New York; and Louis Vuitton, Munich. He represented Switzerland in the 52nd Venice Biennale (2007).