The silvery spires of Canary Wharf, the spotless thoroughfares and perfectly kept squares, sit upon the buried foundations of the West India Import Dock. Throughout its 160 year history the Dock never experienced a particularly pretty day. Today the Wharf is pacified and gentrified and is now this country’s financial powerhouse, with not one jot of its former guise to be found anywhere. That is except for “The Hibbert Gate”, a recreation of the original entrance to the West India Dock and one of the many pieces of public art which can be found dotted around the Wharf, randomly scattered, around its sculpted parks and ramrod straight streets.
Canary Wharf is strangely impotent of atmosphere, yet the art adds something; a little bit of postmodern mystery. Outside Jubilee Place lies Igor Mitoraj’s bandaged bronze head ‘Testa Addormentata’, a grecian style piece with a proud but losing face.