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Karen Tang, 'Synapsid', 2014 | Credit: Rod Gonzalez, courtesy of l'étrangère and KARST
Karen Tang, 'Synapsid', 2014 | Credit: Rod Gonzalez, courtesy of l'étrangère and KARST

Enjoy Art in London This Summer With 'Sculpture in the City'

Picture of Freire Barnes
Art & Design Editor
Updated: 29 June 2017

The annual public art programme, Sculpture in the City, has announced the 16 sculptures that will be placed around the City of London’s Square Mile for all to enjoy throughout the summer.

Launching on June 27, the seventh edition of Sculpture in the City will display internationally acclaimed artists like Paul McCarthy, Ryan Gander and Damien Hirst amongst some of the city’s most iconic buildings, including the Lloyd’s building and the Leadenhall Building, also fondly referred to as the ‘Cheesegrater’.

Paul McCarthy, Apple Tree Boy Apple Tree Girl, 2010 | © Paul McCarthy; Courtesy the artist and Hauser & Wirth; Photo by Jens Kirchner

As with previous years, Sculpture in the City encourages an alternative way of engaging with the city’s urban landscape, inviting both workers and visitors to explore the Square Mile with fresh eyes.

Gary Webb, Dreamy Bathroom, 2014 | © Gary Webb; Courtesy of Gary Webb, The Approach, London and Cass Sculpture Foundation

With such a strong line-up of works, this year’s selection is undoubtedly the best we’ve seen. So what can you expect?

There are playful, eye-popping sculptures by Gary Webb (outside 51 Lime Street, Willis Towers Watson) and Martin Creed which wittingly poke fun at the domestic activities abounding in any city.

Martin Creed, Work No. 2708, 2016 | © Martin Creed; Courtesy the artist and Hauser & Wirth; Photographer: Jamie Woodley

One of Paul McCarthy’s monumental sculptures from the American artist’s Hummel series, Apple Tree Boy Apple Tree Girl (2010) subverts the notion of civic monuments, as does Mark Wallinger’s life-size The Black Horse (2015) which will be positioned on the corner of Bishopsgate and Wormwood Street.

Mark Wallinger, The Black Horse, 2015 | © Mark Wallinger, Courtesy the artist and Hauser & Wirth, photo: Ken Adlard

Gavin Turk’s uncanny, painted bronze sculpture, Ajar (2011) is, as the artist states, a “playful homage to William Blake’s famous doors of perception” and the public are invited to literally engage with the work, walking either way through the doorway into a potentially new sphere.

Gavin Turk, Ajar, 2011 | © Gavin Turk; Courtesy of Aeroplastic Gallery; Photo: © Nick Turpin

This year sees six new locations added to the annual free outdoor sculpture exhibition. Outside the newly finished One Creechurch Place will be Daniel Buren’s 4 Colours at 3 metres high which provides the public with a space for peaceful reflection among the hubbub of the city.

Daniel Buren, 4 Colours at 3 metres high situated work, 2011 | © Daniel Buren; Courtesy Lisson Gallery. Photography: Ken Adlard

As part of the London Festival of Architecture, Co-directors of Sculpture in the City, Stella Ioannou and Simon Glynn will give the public a free introductory tour to the project on June 29 between 12.30pm and 2pm, and June 30 between 4.30pm and 5.30pm. 

You can also download the Smartify app to follow digital tours of the exhibition.

Nathaniel Rackowe, Black Shed Expanded, 2014/2016 | Image courtesy of Parasol unit foundation for contemporary art

Sculpture in the City launches in and around the City of London from Tuesday June 27, 2017.