48. Charming Baker
Label: Paul Smith
British designer, Sir Paul Smith, and UK artist, Charming Baker, collaborated to make a sculpture that is sweetly optimistic and inspired. The polished cast aluminum on a corten steel plinth is titled Triumph in the Face of Absurdity. The sculpture is "about life and about how humble your start is in any way. It's not linked with money or finance, it's to do with the fact that if you try hard and dig deep, however small you start, you can do great things...Effort is free of charge!" The aluminum cast bicycle is based on the one ridden by British gold medalist, Sir Christ Hoy, and had a timely connection to the arrival of the summer Olympics in London that year. The most saccharine detail of the sculpture lies in the small space between the bicycle and the plinth: a little life-size mouse. From afar it is hard to tell, but upon closer investigation it's clear that this tiny mouse is holding up this momentous bike—a feat for any mouse, but especially for the collaborative sculptors.