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The Traveller's Magazine
  •   2 min read

Or is it? There seem to be mixed reviews being circulated about the newest piece of art on the fourth plinth in Trafalgar Square that stands next to Admiral Lord Nelson’s column in central London. A giant indigo blue cockerel now stands where the boy on a rocking horse used to be.

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The work is by German artist Katharina Fitsch and it has been ruffling feathers since April when Westminster revealed that Fitsch’s blue cockerel would be the newest piece of art to be displayed in Trafalgar Square. For eight years the city has used the fourth plinth in front of the National Gallery as a platform for displaying temporary sculptures.

The most recent was a boy on a rocking horse by Elmgreen and Dragset but the plinth has also features work by Mark Wallinger and Rachel Whiteread. The blue cockerel, called “Hahn/Cock” will remain on display for 18 months, long enough for millions to see it while on holidays in London.

What we can say is that it was only fitting that Mayor Boris Johnson was the one to unveil the new piece. It’s a wonder he managed to give a speech without once uttering the name of the piece or that fact that it’s a cockerel.

“Feast your eyes on this beautiful new fourth plinth sculpture. Here it is, the big, blue… BIRD.”

There’s no denying the artist’s double entendre. Fitsch’s work is a symbol of regeneration and strength and it’s no mistake that it’s being displayed in the square that commemorates Britain’s naval victory during  the Napoleonic Wars. The cockerel is a traditional symbol of France and an animal known for its speed and athleticism.

What do you think: do you love it or hate it? Why or why not?

Img: jig o dance / Flickr cc.

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