A major solo exhibition of Marc Quinn's work to date curated by Danilo Ecchera and Achille Bonito Oliva.
The art of Marc Quinn shows that language is not an instrument of representation, but is representation itself.
Quinn overturns the notion of nature, turning it into anti-nature in his works with the use of classical materials like marble and technological prosthesis.
This exhibition provides a striking contrast between the stillness and composure of the marble and polymer wax sculptures and the vivid expressiveness of the Cybernetically Engineered, Cloned and Grown Rabbits sculptures which take on poses that reference traditional figurative sculpture such as torsos or reclining nudes.
Quinn’s sculptures seem to be suspended in space and time, holding off intense and extensive change and decay. The fact that we are all dependent on something else is apparent in this exhibition. All the sculptures have a kind of self-conscious dependence on various things that that keep them in different conditions. Everything has a kind of delicacy.
Watching visitors appreciate the Elgin Marbles at the British Museum prompted Quinn to ask, “how do you make a marble sculpture that’s not completely irrelevant now?” He had an idea that people who loved fragmented antique statuary would react completely differently to a person whose body was the same shape but who obviously was not fragmented. It was the revelation to him of that contradiction which enabled him to make the Complete Marbles sculptures which he feels are relevant today.
Each of the Chemical Life Support sculptures has mixed into the wax one daily dose of the drug the subject takes, so on any given day the subject and the sculpture have the same amount of drug in them. Quinn finds it interesting to use the actual material to be part of the meaning of the of the work, but on the other hand, with the marble sculptures he finds that their meaning, their moral and cultural meaning, is completely bound up with the place that a marble sculpture has in our mind as representing heroism and in marble fragments, loss or nostalgia for a golden age. Investing that meaning into the work through the material adds depth for Quinn.
The Kate Moss sculpture represents something rather than a person. What is interesting is that her image is ubiquitous and protean, it’s everywhere and always different, but the same, and it has a separate life to Kate Moss the person.
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