Marc Quinn Artist Biography
Marc Quinn is a British artist best known for his controversial sculptures including "Self", a life-size cast of his head made from his own frozen blood, "Sphinx", a sculpture of Kate Moss depicted in a yoga position with her legs twisted around the back of her head and "Alison Lapper Pregnant", a 3.6-metre sculpture of the disabled British artist which was put on Trafalgar Square's Fourth Plinth. Although known for his sculptures, his work takes on a wide range of forms including painting, drawing, photography and installation. He explores issues around the human body, mortality, beauty, science and time, and often uses his own body to understand 'what it means to materially exist in the world'. Marc Quinn's work 'In the night garden' depicts mixed arrangements of flowers that naturally would never be found in the same climate nor during the same season, emphasizing how modern technology enables us to defy Mother Nature and create combinations according to our own aesthetic preferences. His portrait of John Sulston, who won the Nobel prize for sequencing the human genome on the Human Genome Project, is in the National Portrait Gallery. It consists of bacteria containing Sulston's DNA in agar jelly. His 2010 exhibition at the White Cube gallery again explored the public's obsession with the body, its perfections and flaws, and how this obsession has led some people to alter their bodies in increasingly extreme ways. Marc Quinn emerged in the 1990's and is associated with the Young British Artists (YBAs) art movement, having shared a flat with Royal Academy of Arts.The sculpture "Self" was bought by Charles Saatchi, and in 2002 it was rumoured that it had been destroyed by Builders who had turned off the freezer in which it was stored whilst expanding the kitchen for Saatchi's partner, the celebrity chef Nigella Lawson. However these were proved to be unfounded when it was exhibited in 2003 for the opening of the new Saatchi gallery in London, and it was the sold in 2005 to an American collector for 1.5m. Marc Quinn studied History of Art at Cambridge University before becoming a sculptor and learning to cast in bronze in 1983, while working as an assistant to Barry Flanagan. His first solo show was held in 1988 at the Jay Jopling/Otis Gallery, London. His work has gone on to be included in numerous exhibitions around the world. Read our editorial featuring Marc Quinn:Marc Quinn Unveils a Meaty Portrait of Pregnant Lara Stone The artrepublic Flower Show with Marc Quinn.