Unveiled recently, Trafalgar Square has gained a giant dollop of ice cream with a cherry on top as the latest modern art installation for the 4th plinth.
An organic fly and a modern fly – a drone — adorn the ice cream which slumps slightly melted over the plinth. If that’s all it was, then well and good – it’s sort of art and sort of decent art at that.
But modern art is less about the art these days than the small white card next to it.
And rather bizarrely, this lump of ice cream is supposed to represent… “Topped with a giant, unstable load, and a hidden drone camera, the plinth becomes a monument to hubris and impending collapse. The surrounding architecture and its population are participants in a mis-scaled landscape. With its overflowing dairy and oversized flying creatures, THE END magnified the banal, and our cohabitation with other life-forms, to apocalyptic proportions”.
Which is, not to put too fine a point on it, utter rubbish.
If that was the intent, then a lump of ice cream is about as far from the end result as would be otherwise possible to have achieved.
Is it aesthetically pleasing — yes. Does it work well in the setting – yes.
Is it a representation of a dystopian collapse? Good grief, not at all.
The End by Heather Phillipson will be on the 4th plinth in Trafalgar Square until Spring 2022.