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Artists Heather Phillipson and Michael Rakowitz Commissioned for Trafalgar Square’s Fourth Plinth

Artworks by Heather Phillipson and Michael Rakowitz have been commissioned for Trafalgar Square’s Fourth Plinth in London, writes The Telegraph’s Anita Singh. Phillipson’s The End, a sculpture of a giant dollop of whipped cream topped by a cherry and invaded by a fly and a working drone, is scheduled to go on display in 2020. Rakowitz’s re-creation of the Lamassu, a winged bull at the entrance to the Nergal Gate of Nineveh from 700 BC—which was destroyed by ISIS—will occupy the plinth in 2018.

Rakowitz has re-created six hundred of the seven thousand artifacts demolished or stolen from Iraq via his project The Invisible Enemy Should Not Exist, which he began in 2006. The Lamassu will be made with emptied date syrup cans imported from Iraq. The artist’s grandparents left Iraq more than sixty years ago, and his family is now scattered throughout New York and London. “The destruction of the past makes the present and the future that much more precarious,” said the artist.

Of her project, Phillipson said, “The cream is this hyper-luxury product, something we associate with celebration, with the cliché of the cherry on top. But at the same time, the cream is on the verge of collapse and these other life forms are coming to inhabit it—flies are attracted to stuff that is rotting or dying, and the drone connects to surveillance and warfare.”

“[The artists’] works are wondrous, striking, and deeply engaging. The new commissions will proudly continue the legacy of the Fourth Plinth in putting world-class contemporary sculpture at the heart of London,” said Ekow Eshun, chair of the Fourth Plinth Commissioning Group.

Artists who’ve taken on the Fourth Plinth in the past include Yinka Shonibare MBE, Marc Quinn, and Katharina Fritsch. David Shrigley’s Really Good, a giant bronze “thumbs up,” is currently presented on the plinth.