Yinka Shonibare creates sculpture for Royal Opera House
London-born artist to sculpt ballerina in a bubble.
Artist Yinka Shonibare is to create a unique artwork to be displayed on the exterior of the Royal Opera House, overlooking Russell Street.
The London-born artist, who is curating this year’s African-themed Deloitte Ignite, is to create a sculpture featuring a life-sized ballerina encased within a giant snow globe as part of the London 2012 Festival. The concept was inspired by an archive photograph of Margot Fonteyn and the sculpture will adorn the side of the building for five years.
Of the commission, Yinka commented:
“This piece is about bringing the childhood sense of magic and wonder to the façade of the Royal Opera House in a very grown up piece of public sculpture that can be enjoyed by all. It’s like a life size fairytale ballerina jewellery box that will spin”
The ballerina figure is modelled on Royal Ballet soloist Melissa Hamilton and will wear a tutu made of African-influenced fabrics. This tutu will be made by the Royal Opera House costume department and the snow globe from synthetic glass, similar to that used in Yinka’s Nelson’s ship in a bottle.
Details about the sculpture’s unveiling will be confirmed soon.