Irreverent UK sculptor Barnaby Barford has just completed his largest piece to date. An installation comprised of 22 individual pieces, the work reflects his view of the corruption of London’s Trafalgar Square.
Impish and sweet characters engage in vandalism, littering, violence, self-abuse and more in this sculptured narrative. Babies booze it up, little girls shoot rats for fun and muggings run rampant in this miniature world. Brandishing everything from alcohol to guns, the ceramic and enamel-painted subjects, who resemble Hummel figurines gone bad, are placed atop round slabs of concrete (this is the first time Barford has used concrete in his work).
As described on the artist’s site:
Trafalgar Square has been described as the blank slab upon which Britain has inscribed it’s modern history, in Barford’s version Drink, Violence, Consumerism, Junk food, Protest and Terrorism all inhabit this world.
In the piece’s centre is a Lion looking a great deal sadder than the ones in the real Trafalgar Square – It has been covered in graffiti. The piece is formalised by 4 columns with cherubs on top, each covered in pigeons and bird shit. The rest of the piece comprises of 22 individual pieces, each a vignette of contemporary life. The saccharine figurines have been transformed from chocolate box, romantic images of life into a new, jarring narrative. Added tension is given to the piece in the form of a loan sports bag, entitled unattended luggage. This is the first time Barford has attempted such a big scene and introduces concrete into his aesthetic.
Barnaby Barford’s Battle Of Trafalgar Square is on view at the OA Gallery from 28th April – 30th June 2010