Artist
Antony Gormley
British sculptor

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Antony Gormley
British sculptor
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Birth Date

1950

rzarlif's picture

Contributor

He’s won all sorts of awards and is wildly popular, but you have to wonder about Antony Gormley.

Over the past 25 years he has created around 17 molds of his very own non-descript body in slightly different slouches and manufactured hundreds of cast-iron and fiberglass copies of himself. It's a little weird. The pic above has one Gormley cast buried chest deep in asphalt on the driveway of the Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art. Most of the body is underground, or so we’re told. Rembrandt van Rijn painted an endless number of self-portraits but at least he had to compose each one and actually paint it. Gormley, in contrast, is using industrial techniques to manufacture his selfie statues.

The self-obsessed artist has multiple versions of himself in London, New York, São Paulo, Rio de Janeiro, Northern Norway, Liverpool, Lincoln, Mass., and Oxford. Gormley's Event Horizon consists of 31 casts installed on top of prominent buildings along London's South Bank and locations around New York City's Madison Square. Southern Italy alone has 100, set among the olive trees and Roman ruins. There's another hundred Gormleys in the Austrian Alps. All this doesn’t include numerous museum installations using the casts. Overkill, perhaps?

While poor Rembrandt’s life was debt-ridden, and his nonpayments resulted in a ban from selling his works in Amsterdam, Gormley has raked it in. His auction record is £3,401,250 for a small-scale model of his Angel of the North. That’s not even the actual sculpture, which is a monstrously big steel angel that's 66 feet tall  with wings measuring 177 feet across. It would probably fetch even more. But money is something he's used to. From a well-to-do London family, chauffeur and all, Gormley is one of the overeducated. Cambridge, Slade School of Fine Art, budhism trip to India...he has a lot to say about his art and it's all documented in the Gormley videos.

A few choice Gormley quotes:

  • His work is "an attempt to materialise the place at the other side of appearance where we all live."
  • "I do like the idea that attempting to ask questions about the place of art in our lives reveals these complex human and social matrices."
  • Upon winning the Turner Prize in 1994, he told an interviewer he was "embarrassed and guilty to have won – it's like being a Holocaust survivor. In the moment of winning there is a sense the others have been diminished. I know artists who've been seriously knocked off their perches through disappointment."

Really? The Holocaust? Get a grip Gormley.

 

 

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Here is what Wikipedia says about Antony Gormley

Sir Antony Mark David Gormley, OBE (born 30 August 1950), is a British sculptor. His works include the Angel of the North, a public sculpture in Gateshead in the North of England, commissioned in 1994 and erected in February 1998, Another Place on Crosby Beach near Liverpool, and Event Horizon, a multi-part site installation which premiered in London in 2007, around Madison Square in New York City, in 2010, in São Paulo, Brazil, in 2012, and in Hong Kong in 2015–16.

In 2008 The Daily Telegraph ranked Gormley number 4 in their list of the "100 most powerful people in British culture".

Check out the full Wikipedia article about Antony Gormley.