Housewife first up for 100-day "live sculpture"

Thu Jul 2, 2009 10:03am EDT
 
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LONDON (Reuters) - A housewife from Sleaford in Lincolnshire will be the first of thousands of people to stand for one hour on top of a plinth in London's Trafalgar Square as part of a 100-day "live sculpture" exercise.

"One & Other" is a work devised by sculptor Antony Gormley for the square's empty plinth, now a platform for temporary works of art.

The first of 2,400 people to feature in Gormley's work is Rachel Wardell, a 35-year-old housewife and mother-of-two. Participants are chosen at random, and 14,500 people have applied so far.

Applications are still open and can be made on the website www.oneandother.co.uk.

"I wanted to be able to represent normal, everyday stay-at-home mums who aren't normally a feature of major artworks -- to show my kids now, and when they're older, that you can do, and be part of anything, no matter how ordinary you are or feel," Wardell said.

She will appear on the plinth at 9 a.m. on Monday, July 6, and will be followed at 10 a.m. by Jason Clark, a 41-year-old nurse from Brighton.

Gormley said of his work:

"In the context of Trafalgar Square with its military, valedictory and male historical statues, this elevation of everyday life to the position formerly occupied by monumental art allows us to reflect on the diversity, vulnerability and particularity of the individual in contemporary society."

(Reporting by Mike Collett-White; Editing by Steve Addison)