The ICA have compiled an exhibition of scaled Maquettes celebrating the Fourth Plinth commission. Since 1999, the ‘empty’ Northwest plinth in Trafalgar Square, London has been home to some of the world’s most unusual contemporary art. This show brings together a wide range of historical material including a display of commissioned maquettes made by some of the most celebrated artists working today.
The Fourth Plinth is popular both with the art establishment and the general public alike, bringing out the art critic in everyone. This exhibition traces the myriad responses to the commissions through media clippings, public comments, and archive material. You are invited to explore the development of the Fourth Plinth programme from its inception to its current status as a world class art commission.
For the last 13 years, the empty ‘fourth plinth‘ in Trafalgar Square has rarely been seen empty. It is an original ongoing arts programme which has seen eight sculptures occupy the stone pedestal. The first sculpture to be chosen was Marc Quinn’s Alison Lapper Pregnant. It was a powerful image of the heavily pregnant disabled artist rendered in Italian Marble. The comission has also seen a ship in a bottle, a boy on a rocking horse and even the public had there say with One and Other the Antony Gormley piece, which invited hundreds of people to create their own work of art on-top of the granite slab.
In December, the Institute of Contemporary Arts hosts a retrospective looking back at this most public of art programmes. Fourth Plinth: Contemporary Monument compiles documents and models showing the winning entries and the less successful pitches. The exhibition will also look ahead to the future of the commission, including the giant blue cock due to be erected next year.
Artists exhibited include: Chris Burden, Allora & Calzadilla, Sokari Douglas Camp, Jeremy Deller, Elmgreen & Dragset, Tracey Emin, Katharina Fritsch, Brian Griffiths, Hew Locke, Stefan Gec, Antony Gormley, Anish Kapoor, Sarah Lucas, Mariele Neudecker, Marc Quinn, Thomas Schütte, Yinka Shonibare MBE, Bob & Roberta Smith, Mark Wallinger, Rachel Whiteread and Bill Woodrow.
5 December 2012 – 20 January 2013