© VG Bild-Kunst, Bonn

Hans Haacke’s Gift Horse

Back in March 2015, Hans Haacke’s bronze skeleton of a horse was unveiled in London’s Trafalgar Square. The sculpture, mounted on the Fourth Plinth, opposite the grand statue of King George IV, who sits on a horse opposite, was adorned with an LED bow, streaming the latest stock prices from London Stock Exchange. It was a political statement, right in the heart of the British capital, and when unveiled by London’s Mayor at the time, Boris Johnson, was described jovially as an “emaciated quadruped”.

From April 27, Hans Haacke’s Gift Horse will be on show in Haus der Kunst’s Middle Hall, and the artist himself will be present at the vernissage, speaking to the museum’s curator (in German), Ulrich Wilmes, about his provocative anti-capitalism piece. The sculpture will be in place at Haus der Kunst until August 20.

2 comments on “Hans Haacke’s Gift Horse

  1. May I ask where you took the “anti-capitalist” reference from? The museum itself quotes Haacke as follows: “As for whether the Gift Horse is a memorial or a monument, if you like, you can take it as a tribute to the City, the Wall Street of London.”
    To my ears, “tribute” sounds rather…well….not-so-anti, to say the least 😉

    • Hi Marcus,
      Thanks for your comment – interesting point; you led me to check this out further 🙂 (the anti-capitalist sentiment was my interpretation)
      The Week reviewed interpretations from the press, which is a fascinating analysis, and I must admit that if the London Mayor could praise it, then it really isn’t a particularly contentious piece of art.

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