Bob and Roberta Smith makes it onto Fourth Plinth - via Walsall

By Culture24 Staff | 17 August 2009
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A picture of people standing in front of a statue on a square

(Above) Antony Gormley with his some of his Fourth Plinth finalists. Bob and Roberta Smith missed out on the commission. Courtesy David Parry

Patrick Brill, the artist known as Bob and Roberta Smith, could have been allocated far more than an hour on the Fourth Plinth at Trafalgar Square.

One of his sculptures was among the five candidates shortlisted to take over the London vantage point, ultimately losing out to Antony Gormley's high-profile One and Other, where individuals take to the spot for an hour each in a continuous 100-day cycle.

Smith won't be stepping up personally to grab the 60 minutes of Square fame he'll have to settle for, so Stephen Snoddy – a self-proclaimed "champion" of the artist who is working with him in his role as Director of The New Art Gallery in Walsall – will be taking his work to the Plinth during his slot at lunchtime on August 28.

A picture of a man standing in front of a wall

Bob and Roberta Smith (pictured) will be working on a project about Jacob Epstein from September. © John Cooper

He'll be presenting Smith's 22 Demands to Save the Planet by 2019, a selection of requests which include the introduction of a stop at Walsall on the high-speed line between London and Leeds and the reinstatement of a Cross River Tram by Plinth project commissioner Boris Johnson.

Smith's slogan-dependent style instantly lends itself to the task – his unsuccessful design for the scheme was an illuminated peace sign powered by sun and wind, although his efforts with Walsall have been unperturbed by his London disappointment.

A picture of an art gallery lit up at night

Wallsall's New Art Gallery

In New Ways of Collaborating, Smith has created an interactive celebration of the Gallery’s noted miscellany from the life of early 20th century sculptor Jacob Epstein, from photographs and manuscripts to diaries and drawings.

An 18-month project alongside archivist Neil Lebeter, it begins in Walsall in September. 2009.

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