Marc Quinn and Figurative Sculpture

More Works by Marc Quinn


The work that brought Marc Quinn into wider public consciousness was  Self (1991), a cast of the artist’s head made from 4.5 litres of his own blood. The blood was taken over a period of 5 months, poured into a mould and frozen. With its eyes closed and expressionless face, the piece appears like a death mask. It is displayed on a refrigerated stand and as it ages it shows minor surface changes, prompting the viewer to contemplate their own mortality.

Alison Lapper Pregnant
This 15ft sculpture from the same series of work as Kiss, was chosen for the empty Fourth Plinth in Trafalgar Square and was on display until April 2007.

It seems that there are few public sculptures of people with disabilities, however in Trafalgar Square stands the statue of Admiral Lord Nelson, with one arm (pictured below, right)

Nelson's Column is the epitome of a phallic male monument and I felt that the square needed some femininity, linking with Boudicca near the Houses of Parliament. Alison's statue could represent a new model of female heroism. In the past, heroes such as Nelson conquered the outside world. Now it seems to me they conquer their own circumstances and the prejudices of others, and I believe that Alison's portrait will symbolise this. I'm not physically disabled myself but from working with disabled sitters I realised how hidden different bodies are in public life and media. Her pregnancy also makes this a monument to the possibilities of the future.
Marc Quinn

I regard it as a modern tribute to femininity, disability and motherhood. It is so rare to see disability in everyday life – let alone naked, pregnant and proud. 

-   Alison Lapper

The text within this resource is available to download as a PDF using the link below.

Document icon Learning article provided by: Museums Sheffield: Graves Gallery | 
This content is licensed under Creative Commons BY NC SA

Accessibility Statement | Terms of Use | Site Map

Copyright © My Learning 2018. All Rights Reserved

Website by: Grapple