Project: cook after bagdad
Year the project commenced: 2009
Year it became impossible: 2010
"I was a TV editor in a commercial TC news room on September 11 2001. I then also watched the foreign news feeds pour in from the middle east when Iraq was attacked by allied troops a few years later.
'Cook After Baghdad' was to be a recreation of the moments American troops attempted to fell the bronze statue of Saddam Hussein in the centre of Baghdad. Being bronze, the massive sculpture was almost impossible to pull over. Bronze is an ancient and incredibly strong art material.
It seemed to me that the sculptors won out in the end. The media moment of military success was embarrasingly lost for the Americans. The scultpure took almost 24 hours to awkwardly pull over.
In my concept Cook's head took the place of Saddam's head. I made the head and then baulked at the incredible expense of pouring the entire body. Funding bodies in Melbourne also baulked! The full sculpture has never been realised". Ben Quilty, 2019.
Artist: ben quilty