Worldwide icon-chevron-right Europe icon-chevron-right United Kingdom icon-chevron-right England icon-chevron-right London icon-chevron-right A big thumbs up? David Shrigley reviews modern life

A big thumbs up? David Shrigley reviews modern life

The artist reveals his controversial pro-avocado pro-vandalism views

Advertising

Artist David Shrigley has made a huge thumbs-up sculpture for the Fourth Plinth. So our Art editor Eddy Frankel asked him to give a thumbs up or thumbs down to some important London stuff...

thumb down

Pigeons

‘I don’t like pigeons because they’re like rats with wings, and they carry disease. I don’t know: I do like all living creatures, they’re just the ones I like least in the urban environment.’

thumb up

Avocados

‘A big yes. Popeye and his spinach, that’s me and the avocado.’

Advertising
thumb up

Drugs

‘Drugs are kind of important. We can’t live without drugs. It just depends on the drug, you know?

Methamphetamine: thumbs down. Avocados: thumbs up.’

thumb up

Yoga

‘Yoga: yeah! (Hot yoga: no. Unhygienic.)’

Advertising
thumb down

Driverless cars

‘I’m afraid not.  It just doesn’t make good sense does it?’

Shorts

‘Shorts on men under the age of 30: thumbs up.

Shorts on men over the age of 30: thumbs down.’

EF: ‘I’m 31 and I’m in shorts.' 

‘Just get over it.’

Advertising
thumb up

Marmite

‘Yes. I’ll tell you another thing about Marmite – a combo. Marmite on toast and black tea with milk. That’s the way it should be.’

thumb down

Snacks in the cinema

‘No way. It’s like snacks in church.’

Advertising
thumb down

Scented toilet paper

‘I have no opinion about scented toilet paper.’

EF: ‘You’re basically rubbing perfume into your anus, you either like that or you don’t.’

‘You’re not really rubbing perfume into your anus, it’s just that rubbing the perfume into the anus is a side-effect of trying to do something else. All right, scented toilet paper, get rid of it. I’m a bidet man, given the choice.’

EF: ‘Wow. That’s a bold claim for someone who’s not French.’

‘Everybody likes a bidet, don’t they? Once you figure out what it’s for, bidets are really useful.’

thumb down

Flatpack furniture

‘To hell with flatpack furniture and the shop that sells it.’

Advertising
thumb up

The night tube

‘Has to be a good thing.’

EF: ‘There’s a lot of vomit on it, though.’

‘I didn’t say I wanted to ride on it.’

thumb up

Boris Johnson

‘Sorry, Boris, I’m one of Sadiq’s men now.’

Advertising
thumb down

Theresa May

‘Sorry, I don’t like you.’

thumb down

Nigel Farage’s new moustache

‘To hell with Nigel Farage and  his moustache.’

EF: ‘I think his moustache is a good thing.’

‘Yeah but it’s attached to him.’

Advertising
thumb up

The Turner Prize

‘I think it’s good, as long as I don’t have to be nominated for it. It was hard work: you have to do loads of interviews.’

thumb down

Being interviewed

‘Right now it’s great. But sometimes, urgh, it’s hard.’

Advertising
thumb up

Crystal Palace Dinosaurs

‘Yeah, I love dinosaurs. Not so keen on Crystal Palace, but dinosaurs, yeah!’

thumb up

Art

‘Art’s good, right? Yeah.’

Advertising
thumb up

Conceptual art

‘Yeah, best kind of art!’

thumb up

Street art

‘Street art’s good.’ 

EF: ‘All of it?’ 

‘Most of it.’ 

EF: ‘Some of it.’

‘That which is art, is good. That which is vandalism, less so.’

Advertising
thumb up

Vandalism

‘Oddly, I do still quite like vandalism. There’s quite a thin line between street art and vandalism, and  it’s an interesting one. It’s good for now.’

Children in art galleries

‘Well-behaved children in art galleries: thumbs up. Feral children in art galleries: thumbs down.’

EF: ‘I saw a child destroy a piece of art once.’

‘Was it a piece of my art?’ 

EF: ‘It wasn’t. Has that happened?’ 

‘Of course it’s happened!’

Advertising
thumb up

People who rip you off

‘It’s flattery, right? People who steal your art, that’s the most sincere form of flattery.’

thumb up

Other people called David

‘Most of them are OK. If you walk down the street in London and go “Dave!” at least 25 percent of the men will turn around. Which is a good thing! I once went to a wedding where about 50 percent of the men were called David. I think that’s a thumbs up.’

Advertising
thumb up

Being called ‘Shriggles’

'That's fine.'

Snap up exclusive discounts in London

Time Out's handpicked deals — hurry, they won't be around for long...

Advertising