Elmgreen & Dragset unveil sculpture in London

ART. The Danish-Norwegian artistic duo Elmgreen & Dragset unveils their sculpture of a boy on a giant rocking horse in Trafalgar Square on Thursday 23 February 2012. The sculpture will go on display on the Fourth Plinth at the prominent London location.

Fourth Plinth

'Powerless Structures, Fig 101', 2010 maquette by Elmgreen & Dragset - photo © James O Jenkins

Elmgreen & Dragset will unveil their giant bronze sculpture, "Powerless Structures, Fig 101", in Trafalgar Square in London on Thursday 23 February 2012 at 9.30 AM. The Danish-Norwegian artistic duo won the Fourth Plinth Programme last year for their sculpture portraying a boy playing astride his rocking horse.

By elevating a child to the status of a historical hero, the sculpture celebrates the heroism of growing up and questions the tradition of monuments predicated on military victory or defeat. So says Elmgreen & Dragset, according to The Mayor of London's press release:

"We always considered the small everyday battles in each person’s life just as important for the understanding of our culture as any big sensational headlines."

It is the first time that non-British artists win Fourth Plinth, which this year is considered extraordinarily important because London will be Olympic host, and thus attract world attention. The boy and the rocking horse will keep the pigeons company on the Fourth Plinth for 18 months, 23 February 2012-1 April 2013.

Elmgreen & Dragset in the documentary "How Are You"

Michael Elmgreen (Denmark) and Ingar Dragset (Norway) have been working with happenings, installations and other activist art practices since the mid-90s and has drawn attention worldwide in questioning issues about sex, identity and power relations. They have held numerous solo exhibitions in art institutions worldwide, including Serpentine Gallery and Tate Modern in London, Museum Boijmans van Beuningen in Rotterdam, ZKM Museum of Modern Art in Karlsruhe, The Power Plant in Toronto, MUSAC in Léon, and Kunsthalle Zürich.

Jannik Splidsboel's feature-length documentary "How Are You" offers a comprehensive view of the duo's projects and collaboration over the years. The film spans from their first encounter in 1995 when the two of them hooked up both privately and professionally and knitted their first work, "Instant Baby", to the opening of their exhibition "The Collectors" at the 2009 Venice Biennale, where visitors were invited as guests into a fictional home complete with a pricy art collection, bedroom, fireplace and a string of uncanny narratives unfolding throughout the homely setting.

The film, which was selected for Panorama in Berlin 2011, Hot Docs in Toronto and Buenos Aires, is produced by Henrik Underbjerg and Stefan Frost for Radiator Film with a development subsidy from the Danish Film Institute.

"How Are You" is yet to be released internationally.

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The Fourth Plinth Programme

The Fourth Plinth Programme is funded by the Mayor of London with support from Arts Council England. A rolling programme of commissions has for the past six years selected new artworks for the vacant Fourth Plinth in the northwest corner of Trafalgar Square. The plinth was originally designed by Sir Charles Barry in 1841 to display an equestrian statue, however due to insufficient funds the statue was never completed.

Read more about the Fourth Plinth

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