We’re not sure about this Anthony Gormley Fourth Plinth thing. It seems like what could have been a deeply artistic and (more importantly) pretty-to-look-at thing has been hijacked by that singularly British phenomenon: having to make a point.
The backstory for those who don’t know what a plinth is, let alone a fourth plinth, is that in glittering London’s Trafalgar Square – much beloved of the nation and extremely high profile – there stands a plinth. While the other three plinths in the square have a statue on them – you know, kings and that sort of thing – there is one that has never been filled.
Of recent, modern sculptors have been given the opportunity to fill the plinth, the latest of which is Anthony Gormley off-of Angel of the North, that big aeroplane-type angel that stands over a motorway as you drive into North (it’s a place up from London that we try not to go to).
His idea is to have a new real life human being stand on the plinth every hour, twenty-four hours a day from now until October… All very well, you think. It’ll be someone who can do a really good yoga position or a ballet dancer or something AMAZING. Right? Wrong, unfortch.
A lot of the applicants want to ‘bring attention to ____’. Fill in the gap yourself. Yep, instead of just wanting to do something amazing, they are doing it all for charity. It’s a national flaw.
The relevance of the picture of a man with a balloon from the fantastic Fantasticsmag site is that there’s some housewife going on the plinth – maybe she’s been and gone by now – to throw balloons. To highlight… something and nothing.