Once again London embraces sculpture which captivates those curious members of the public who previously tracked elephants, spotted Gormley’s casts and even wandered around looking for miniature artworks on chewing gum.
Now, Totally Thames has commissioned The Rising Tide by artist Jason deCaires Taylor. Open from the 2nd – 30th September 2015 four life size horses with riders are concealed and revealed with the tide of the Thames. They can be found standing on the river bed near Vauxhall Bridge, Albert Embankment side.
The horses and their riders reflect the history of the Thames and its ever changing nature. However, a celebration of the Thames is not its only aim. The sculptures represent the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse, providing us with a dark message of what is to come. The rising water highlights climate change as each horse and its rider is slowly engulfed with only their heads remaining above the surface. Each horse’s head is shaped like an oil well pump (horsehead pumps) as a reference to our dependence on fossil fuels.
The riders sit with their eyes closed, facing out across the metropolis where money is being made, there’s non-stop traffic, lights remain on 24/7 and we consume everything in our paths. The two business men offer a representation of those currently in control and the two children, the future.
Taylor’s Malaysian childhood experiences influenced his life and work as he spent a great deal of his youth exploring the coral reefs. As an adult he is a diving instructor, underwater photographer and naturalist. Taylor also founded the first underwater sculpture park which you can find in Grenada, as well as co-founding a submerged museum of 500 of his works in Cancun, Mexico, the Museo Subacuàtico de Arte.
Alongside his passion for all things aquatic, Taylor completed a BA Honours degree in sculpture at the London Institute of Art. His work encompasses the natural beauty of the underwater world as well as raising awareness of environmental issues.
For more information on The Rising Tide and other arts, culture and river events related to Totally Thames, please visit www.Totallythames.org/about
The installation is fully visible from the riverside walkway for up to two hours either side of low tide.
Approximate low tide times:
Tue 1 (11.45am); Wed 2 (12.30pm); Thur 3 (1pm); Fri 4 (1.30pm); Sat 5 (2pm); Sun 6 (2.45pm); Mon 7 (3.45pm); Tue 8 (5pm); Wed 9 (6.45pm); Thur 10 (8pm); Fri 11 (8.15am); Sat 12 (9am); Sun 13 (9.45am); Mon 14 (10.15am); Tue 15 (11am); Wed 16 (11.15am); Thur 17 (11.45am); Fri 18 (12.15pm); Sat 19 (12.45pm); Sun 20 (1.15pm); Mon 21 (1.30pm); Tue 22 (2.15pm); Wed 23 (3.30pm); Thur 24 (5.45pm); Fri 25 (7pm); Sat 26 (7.30am); Sun 27 (8.45am); Mon 28 (9.45am); Tue 29 (10.30am); Wed 30 (11.15am)
By Helen Shewry