LONDON.- Kenny Hunter’s hand-sculpted goat stands atop a stack of packing crates to create the 3.5metre high I Goat, which was inspired by Spitalfields’ rich, ongoing social history.
I Goat is sited in one of London’s most high profile public spaces, Bishops Square, Spitalfields, and will be seen by more than 70,000 people a week, becoming an important addition to the City’s landscape.
Scottish sculptor Hunter beat seven other shortlisted designs to win the £45,000 commission, winning the votes of both the prize judges – including Sir Richard MacCormac and Alex Sainsbury of Raven Row - and the public. Hunter is known for his monumental sculptures and his works have been exhibited worldwide.
The goat stands as a symbol for the various waves of migration that have found sanctuary in Spitalfields and helped to shape it. It is also an image of persecution and sacrifice, reflecting how each successive group of immigrants has faced their own combination of conflict, oppression and poverty, all eventually finding a new home in London. The crates on which it is perched reference the market as well as the area’s history of transience and human flux.
I Goat is now a permanent part of the Spitalfields Public Art Collection, with the intention to create a sculpture park within the site featuring the winning sculptures of 2010 and beyond.
Spitalfields links the vibrancy of the City with the creativity of the East End and is itself a hub of commerce and the arts. New and historic buildings, landscaping and large piazzas combine to provide the ideal situation for this inspirational and large scale sculpture.
Born in Edinburgh in 1962, Kenny Hunter studied sculpture at Glasgow School of Art. He has exhibited extensively abroad and in the U.K. including solo exhibitions at Scottish National Portrait Gallery (2000), Centre for Contemporary Arts (Glasgow, 2003), Yorkshire Sculpture Park (2006), Tramway (Glasgow, 2008) and Conner Contemporary, Washington DC (2009). Hunter has also created a number of high profile, commissioned works including 'Youth with split apple' (2005) for Kings College, Aberdeen, 'Citizen Firefighter' (2001) outside Glasgow's Central Station and ‘Natural Selection’ (2006) in Great Ormond Street Hospital. He was one of five shortlisted for the Olympic arts project Artists Taking The Lead, in Scotland. Hunter lives and works in Glasgow.
The 2010 prize judges were: Nigel Hall, Andrew Lambirth, Sir Richard MacCormac, Alex Sainsbury, Diana Burrell (Spitalfields Festival), Eileen Kelliher (Allen & Overy LLP) and Toby Brown (of Hammerson, who represented the public vote).