Tuesday, July 17, 2007


My sister pointed these marvellous sculptures out to me, on a walk down the South Bank of the Thames yesterday as in the changed date and time of this post.
The Hayward Gallery (on the South Bank) has commissioned Antony Gormley (of The Angel Of The North fame, amongst other work), to produce the largest ever "urban art exhibition" all summer.
He has produced 31 (I know not of that numbers significance) life size casts of his naked body, which he has fixed to roofs of prominent high buildings like the Shell Tower, around the South Bank.
I like them. I like them a lot. As my Sister said, it looks like "They are people committing suicide!"
Gormley has called the exhibition (running alongside his "Blind Light" exhibition at the Haymarket) "Event Horizon". He wants people to understand that over 50% of the planet's population now live within cities, and "I want people to see these sculptures, even out of the corner of their eyes, on the horizon, and feel uneasy about the city, and what's happening around them".
Well..... I'm not convinced by that, but I do think its a wonderful idea.
Myself, though, I would have liked him to go one step further (and leave the reason for the exhibition behind). Rather like the contemporary graffiti of "Banksy", much of which I have a lot of time for, I would have preferred Gormley to also cast two coppers in various poses for each of his 31 upright casts - you know, persuading the statue to reconsider his suicidal aims, or leading one or two of them away! Maybe one or two hanging off a ledge, or one peering down through a cast telescope at the tourists below! I would have liked them much more if they were different and posed. But I do understand that was NOT the point of the exhibition. Shame!
If you are on the South Bank before the middle of August, do keep your eyes on the tops of the surrounding buildings!

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