David Shrigley Will Install Giant Grocery List in Central Park

Grocery lists can be art, too, according to the 2013 Turner Prize nominee.

David Shrigley, MEMORIAL (2016). Artist sketch. Image: Courtesy the artist and Anton Kern Gallery.
David Shrigley, MEMORIAL (2016). Artist sketch. Image: Courtesy the artist and Anton Kern Gallery.

From September 8, New Yorkers will be able to enjoy a new, massive public artwork by British artist David Shrigley.

Shrigley is an artist best known for his hilarious—and multidisciplinary—riffs on everyday thoughts and occurrences, and so, in his typical whimsical style Shrigley will create a piece titled MEMORIAL, which will consist of a 17-foot-tall shopping list.

According to the press release, the granite sculpture—which will grace the Doris C. Freedman Plaza in New York’s Central Park courtesy of the Public Art Fund—takes its cue from the civic monuments scattered all around the city.

“Public monuments are familiar features of parks and plazas across the world and enable communities to celebrate, remember, or pay homage to great endeavors or individuals,” said Emma Enderby, Public Art Fund associate curator.

“In MEMORIAL, however, David has chosen to celebrate one of the most familiar acts in many of our daily lives: the jotting down of a grocery list. By memorializing a list in this way, the work pays homage both to no-one and to everyone—it’s a simple ode to humanity.”

The monumental piece is a large-scale version of Shrigley’s 2008 sculpture Gravestone, which also featured a pedestrian shopping list.

“A 2016 grocery list is different than one written just a few decades ago,” Enderby explained. “Its ephemerality, including the fact that it is often written on a scrap of paper or a smartphone, is in sharp contrast with Shrigley’s selection of material—a solid slab of granite—on which to engrave these banal words.”

September is proving to be a very busy month for the 2013 Turner Prize nominee, who, on top of his New York outing, will also unveil his work for London’s Fourth Plinth Commission at Trafalgar Square on September 29. Titled Really Good, the piece is a ten-foot-tall “thumbs-up” sculpture rendered in bronze.

That same month, the British artist will also launch the participatory exhibition “David Shrigley: Life Model II” at the Rose Art Museum, Brandeis University, Massachusetts.


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