Trafalgar Square’s Fourth Plinth artwork shortlist announced

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TheFourth Plinth Commission

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The End by Heather Phillipson: Described as exploring the extremes of shared experience, from commemorations and celebrations to mass protests, all while being observed by a drone’s camera

A scoop of ice cream covered in parasites and an empty robe are some of the new proposals for the Fourth Plinth in Trafalgar Square.

Also put forward is a recreation of a sculpture destroyed by so-called Islamic State.

Maquettes of the proposed works will be on display at the National Gallery until 26 March. The two winners will then be chosen.

The two chosen works will be unveiled on the plinth in 2018 and 2020.

The Fourth Plinth Programme invites world-class artists to make new works for the capital.

A maquette is a small preliminary sketch, or wax or clay model, from which a work of art is elaborated.

The new proposals are:

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Fourth Plinth Commission

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High Way by Damián Ortega: Described as a playful and precarious construction of a truck, oil cans, scaffold and a ladder

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The foruth Plinth Commission

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Untitled by Huma Bhabha: Described as an imposing figure, the scale reflecting a modern comic sci-fi movie

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The Fourth Plinth Commission

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The Invisible Enemy Should Not Exist by Michael Rakowitz: Described as a recreation of the Lamassu, a winged bull and protective deity, which was destroyed by so-called Islamic State in 2015

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The Fourth Plinth Commission

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The Emperor’s Old Clothes by Raqs Media Collective: Described as exploring how power can be both present and absent in sculpture

The current artwork, David Shrigley’s Really Good, will be on the plinth until March 2018.

The 7m-high (23ft) sculpture of a hand giving a thumbs up sign was unveiled last September.

Mayor of London Sadiq Khan said: “I’m delighted to see that the shortlisted commissions are not just from the UK but from around the globe, a clear sign that London is open to creativity.

“The Fourth Plinth reflects the best of London in so many ways – it is inventive, pioneering, surprising and a source of delight, discussion and debate for millions of Londoners and visitors from across the world.”

Mark Wallinger’s figure Ecce Homo was the first piece to stand on the empty plinth – in the north-west corner of the square – in 1999.

Other works have included Alison Lapper Pregnant by Marc Quinn (2005), Nelson’s Ship in a Bottle by Yinka Shonibare (2010) and Elmgreen and Dragset’s Powerless Structures, Fig 101 – a sculpture of a boy astride his rocking horse.

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