Tuesday, 17 August 2010

Fiona Banner - Harrier and Jaguar

Fiona Banner's decommissioned fighter planes fit surprisingly well into the two Duveen galleries at Tate Britain: their scale is human, not awe inspiring, though shock and awe are in one's thoughts when viewing them. Harrier jets on practice runs would roar low over the roof of our Shropshire hideaway when the children were young in the eighties. They inspired awe - and fear. Their piercing screech evoked danger and death, the threat of war, killing machines. These gallery planes are silent, slaughtered predators, hanging from a meathook or upended on a butcher's slab. Their forms are perfectly sculptural and perfectly at home in these cultural spaces, the minimalism of their aesthetic appeal only marred by the over-litteral feathering on the unpolished metal wings of the Harrier.

The Harrier

The Jaguar