Mark Wallinger, Three of the “Id Paintings” Series, 2015-2016, Paint on Canvas
Mark Wallinger is a British artist, best known for his 1999 sculpture, “Ecco Homo” in Trafalgar Square and his 2007 “State Britain” at Tate Britain. He won the Turner Prize, an annual prize presented to British visual artists, in 2007.
The “id Paintings” have grown out of Wallinger’s extensive series of self-portraits, and they reference the artist’s own body. His height – and therefore his arm span – is the basis of the canvas size. They are exactly this measurement in width and double in height. Wallinger uses symmetrical bodily gestures on the two halves of the canvas to mirror one another, recalling the bilateral symmetry of Leonardo da Vinci’s “Vitruvian Man”.
Created by sweeping paint-laden hands across the canvas in active freeform gestures, the “id Paintings” bear the evidence of their making and of the artist’s encounter with the surface. In recognising figures and shapes in the material, the viewer reveals their own desires and predilections while trying to interpret those of the artist.