Cork Street Galleries unveils street banners by artist Gina Fischli

Cork Street Galleries is pleased to announce a new initiative which will see a series of artists invited to design banners for Cork Street. Gina Fischli is the first artist to be invited to take up the public art commission and has designed a site-specific installation. Fischli’s banners, based on five photographs, will hang across Cork Street like bunting, encouraging the street’s visitors to stop and look up.

Cork Street lies at the centre of the highest concentration of galleries in London and remains the spiritual and cultural home of the global art world, launching the careers of some of the greatest artists of our time. The unveiling of Fischli’s artwork titled Ravenous and Predatory (2021) marks an exciting and historic moment for the street.

Ravenous and Predatory (2021) draws the eye up past the street’s ground floor windows and depicts a series of animals including a mouse, bat, squirrel, black bird and wolf. Fischli has collected the animal imagery as screen grabs from the internet and from open-source platforms, apart from the image of the blackbird which is by wildlife photographer Paul
Sorrell. The animal portraits directly interact with their surroundings and express an emotion or action for us all. Whilst they pose as something that seems at first glance endearing, there is an undercurrent of intimidation and potential danger heightened by their enlarged format and aerial perspective.

Fischli, a graduate from the Royal Academy of Art, was among the diverse group of artists selected by guest editor Hans Ulrich Obrist, Artistic Director at the Serpentine Galleries, for the latest edition of Catalogue, the art journal published by Cork Street Galleries. Catalogue 4.5 was created and published during lockdown as a way of celebrating conversation, ideas and the energy of creative exchange between the global art community. Hans Ulrich Obrist posed the question ‘what is your unrealised project?’ to 39 new-generation artists, in his Editor’s letter he mentions his hopes that many of the projects will soon become realised.

Fischli’s contribution was Street Flags Proposal from 2017, a project which is now being realised with the support of Cork Street Galleries. “In the three years I studied at the Royal Academy I spent every day in Mayfair and with the tension of this neighbourhood. I found it endlessly fascinating because it visualizes so much of what London as a city is right now but also a fantasy landscape of what it once was. It is an intriguingly beautiful woman that has undergone over thirty facelifts and stands apart from any timeline. I love art in public places and immediately started to think about ways art could exist in this peculiar landscape which is really tricky because all the space is already densely occupied. This collage artwork was originally handed in as a proposal for the Royal Academy’s 250th year anniversary and then last year I was so happy to share it as my ‘unrealised project’ for Catalogue magazine and finally give it life. I really hope the work will be of good service to everyone.” Gina Fischli

“We’re thrilled to be starting a new initiative whereby emerging and established artists are invited to design site-specific public artworks for Cork Street Galleries. This marks a historic
moment for Cork Street as it will be the first-time banners have been hung across the street. It is more significant than ever that we see art not just in a gallery context but that it spills into the street and is viewable to all.” Julian Stocks, Property Director, The Pollen Estate

“The amazing galleries and exhibitions of Westminster are an important way of attracting visitors back to our City after months of lockdown. Cork Street is a must-see on the cultural map so we are really pleased to be part of this initiative led by the Pollen Estate. What a treat for people coming into Westminster to have art served to them in the street!” Cllr Matthew Green, Westminster City Council

Notes to Editors

Gina Fischli
Gina Fischli (b. 1989, Zurich) studied at the Royal Academy of Art, London (2018) and the University of Fine Arts Hamburg, Hamburg (2015). Solo exhibitions include Sandy Brown, Berlin (upcoming); Soft Opening, London (upcoming); Chapter NY, New York (upcoming); Good Girl, Neuer Essener Kunstverein, Essen (2021); Gina Fischli at 303 Gallery, New York (2020) and Interior Living at SUNDY, London (2018). Group exhibitions