a taxidermic moment


Call me a Yahoo but if you prick up your ears you might just catch the sound of mass whinnying; the pawing of hoofs and the odd titanic neigh coming from somewhere in north Kent where Mark Wallinger will be installing his colossal gee-gee by the Ebbsfleet railway station in time for the Olympic influx in 2012. Fifty metres high, that’s a hell of a croup, a monster fetlock. But then contemporary art seems so stampeded with equimania that an extra-terrestrial visiting in time for Frieze (and they probably are) could be forgiven for assuming that, from Queen to commoners, Britain is in the grip of an esoteric cult of the filly and the stallion. Petrified horses are closing in on the West End of London where War Horse commands the stage. On Park Lane, David Backhouse’s Animals in War memorial features a noble patriotic dobbin and only a few months back, minding my own business at night, I caught sight of something colossal mounted on high where the Lane meets Bayswater Road. By daylight, the object turned out to be one of Nic Fiddian-Green’s decapitated and slightly shattered outsize horse-heads.

more from Simon Schama at the FT here.