Their Kingdom for a Horse?

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Back in January I posted about a British competition to choose the design for a massive outdoor sculpture at the site of a planned new transit center in Kent. I’ve been envious for a while of the way the Brits can create interest in contemporary art by way of public competitions, but I was also a little wary of this one because of the requirement that the sculpture should be around 165 ft. (50 m.) tall. It’s not often that “big” gets you “good.” Granted, I never saw the Colossus of Rhodes.

Yesterday the proposals of the five finalists were unveiled. They include Rachel Whiteread’s artificial mountain with a cast interior of a house on top, an open-work abstract steel tower by Richard Deacon, a vertical concrete disc by Christopher Le Brun, a giant signal tower by Daniel Buren and the strangest, a white horse, 33 times life size, by Mark Wallinger, the most recent winner of the Turner Prize, who has a thing for horses.

You can see images here. On first impression, I’m inclined to agree with Adrian Searle at the British daily the Guardian that most of them look like contemporary art, blown up and stuck in a field.

The winner will be announced this fall. I’m betting on the horse.