An Urban Art Attack
Its summertime and everybody’s outside busily enjoying themselves having picnics and barbecues and basking in beer gardens. Luckily for art lovin’ Londoners there’s an outdoor sculpture exhibition featuring works by the likes of Antony Gormley, Jake and Dinos Chapman and Robert Indiana.
If you head to the heart of the Square Mile in London’s main financial district you will stumble upon iconic signs and figures, shiny balls of nothing much and, er, prehistoric creatures! The works have been selected in response to the surrounding environment and architecture, which includes the sky scraping mirrored ‘Gherkin’ and the award-winning space-age ‘Inside-Out’ Lloyds building.
Chapman, for example, comprises three large steel dinosaurs measuring up to seven metres high and eight metres in length. From certain angles they look like your typical fearsome dinosaurs, transported to a modern playground of shiny futuristic buildings. At others, they look like they’re about to gleefully eat the Gherkin.
Made up of lots of stainless steel objects to form a large sphere is More Really Shiny Things That Don’t Mean Anything by Ryan Gander. This impressive sculpture stands on a plinth, towered, like the dinosaurs, by all the really shiny buildings around it. And just as the title suggests, it’s an assortment of things that don’t mean anything. It’s beautiful and mesmerising and doesn’t look at all out of place in this ever-changing urban environment.
One Through Zero (The Ten Numbers) by Robert Indiana is a sculpture consisting of giant, colourful numbers and, interestingly, is situated opposite the Lloyds building. Interestingly, these numbers have a great significance to Indiana’s life, each number relating to personal events in his own life. One represents birth, zero death. He had lived in twenty one different homes by the age of seventeen; that’s a heck of a lot of door numbers and zip codes to remember!
Antony Gormley’s Parallel Field features two separate figures, instantly recognisable as Gormley’s signature Cast Iron Men, giving in to atmospheric pressure and gravity on the street. Robert Indiana; the self proclaimed ‘American Painter of Signs’ has also brought his iconic LOVE sculpture to London along with his Numbers.
The sculptures in the exhibition are in close proximity to each other and there are nine to discover, also including works from Shirazeh Houshiary, Keith Coventry and Richard Wentworth.
This public art initiative, now in its third year, will be around for a while so take the opportunity to go and explore on a weekend when the streets are quiet and have some alone time with some fantastic art installations.
Nearest Tube: Liverpool Street