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Marc Quinn ('Self')

5 of 5 portraits by Marc Quinn

Marc Quinn ('Self'), by Marc Quinn, 2006 - NPG 6863 - © Marc Quinn. Photography by Todd-White Art Photography, courtesy White Cube, London

© Marc Quinn. Photography by Todd-White Art Photography, courtesy White Cube, London

Marc Quinn ('Self')

by Marc Quinn
blood (artist's), liquid silicone, stainless steel, glass, perspex and refrigeration equipment, 2006
80 3/4 in. x 25 5/8 in. 25 5/8 in. (2050 mm x 650 mm x 650mm)
Purchased with help from the Art Fund, the Henry Moore Foundation, Terry and Jean de Gunzburg and ProjectB Contemporary Art, 2009
Primary Collection
NPG 6863


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  • Marc Quinn (1964-), Artist. Sitter in 7 portraits, Artist of 5 portraits.

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  • Marc Quinn (1964-), Artist. Artist of 5 portraits, Sitter in 7 portraits.

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In 'Self', a self-portrait of the artist Marc Quinn is cast in several pints of his frozen blood. The blood is pasteurised, but its appearance does change slightly during the sculpture's installation. Described by Quinn as a 'frozen moment on lifesupport', the work is carefully maintained in a refrigeration unit, reminding the viewer of the fragility of existence. The artist makes a new version of 'Self' every five years, each of which documents Quinn's own physical transformation and deterioration. The first version of 'Self' was made in 1991 and featured in 'Sensation', an exhibition of work from the collection of Charles Saatchi, held at the Royal Academy in the same year.

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