Marc Quinn is one of the leading artists of his generation. His sculptures, paintings and drawings explore the relationships between art and science; Man and nature; the human body and the perception of beauty.
Quinn makes art about what it is to be a person living in the world – creating portraits that ponder the meaning of identity – and how the physical extremities of our body, such as our eyes and fingertips, convey so much about our individuality.
The artist first came to prominence with his 1991 work ‘Self’, a sculpture of the artist’s head rendered from eight pints of his own frozen blood. Over the decade that followed, the Young British Artist (YBA) group, of which Quinn was a member, re-defined how contemporary art was made, shown, and appreciated.
Following the group’s infamous 1997 Sensation show, Quinn developed several statue series that, together, continued the interrogation of ‘Self’ into the variety and malleability of the human form, and the limits and lacunae of the Western sculptural tradition.
His statue of a pregnant Alison Lapper, who was born physically disabled, was exhibited on Trafalgar Square’s Fourth Plinth between 2006-2007 (a larger, inflatable version of the marble statue, titled ‘Breath’, was exhibited at the 2012 Paralympics)
Other critically acclaimed works include Garden (2000), a large-scale frozen flower garden commissioned by Fondazione Prada, Milan; A Genomic Portrait: Sir John Sulston (2001), a DNA portrait of the scientist exhibited at the National Portrait Gallery, London; Siren (2008), a solid gold sculpture of the model Kate Moss displayed at The British Museum, London.
More recent works include Zombie Boy (2011), a portrait of a man heavily covered in tattoos on view at SF MoMA, and Drawn from Life (2017), a series of life-cast sculptures examining the physical language of love displayed at Sir John Soane’s Museum, London.
Quinn’s work is included in museum collections across the world, including Tate, London; Metropolitan Museum, New York; Peggy Guggenheim Collection, Venice; Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam; and the Centre Pompidou, Paris.