London is generous with its culture. Many of the museums allow free entry and there are seasonal events that cost nothing to attend and enjoy. But it's London's public art which provides some of the richest sources of inspiration for me. It's the element of surprise that does it.
|Christopher Le Brun, City Wing|
|Dale Chihuly, The Sun|
The business district of the City of London is a favourite place to visit on non-business days. It's soothing to enjoy the spaces between the deserted glass towers.
|The fountain at Exchange Square|
|The Broadgate Venus of Fernando Botero|
|...reclining among the remnants of World Cup celebrations|
|Xavier Corbero, The Broad Family. Click this picture for a better view|
of the shoes at the bottom of the 'child' sculpture.
Walking home from work, or hurrying to catch the Tube, we bump into a strange collection of figures that startles and then intrigues us.
|George Segal, Rush Hour|
Many works are worth revisiting at night, in case the location has any more surprises to enjoy.
|Rush Hour at night, lit by the changing displays of Finsbury Square.|
|Jacques Lipchitz, Bellerophon Taming Pegasus|
One of my favourite Greek heroes makes an appearance in a side street: an ancient myth told in a new way.
Towering over the Broadgate entrance of Liverpool Street Station is Richard Serra's Fulcrum, an enclosed space made from fabricated steel. Serra is an American sculptor whose metal enclosures are minimalist but enormous, relying on audience participation for the full experience.
His works usually have two or more entrances, encouraging different perspectives. Like much of the City, Serra's work can be expansive and claustrophobic at the same time.
Public art gives me the chance to pause and contemplate, even in the busiest part of the city. It's a chance to connect with another artistic mind, and to share that connection with other viewers, in a brief communal experience.