Michael Newman was one of the first critics to appraise Antony Gormley's work. In an early essay, written in 1987, Newman wrote - 'Since Leonardo's time the world has become a set of objects to be understood and used rather than something in which we participate. For Antony Gormley art furnishes a free imaginative space in which to reachieve unity, balance and the reconciliation between man and the cosmos.'
Antony Gormley (b.1950, London, UK)
Over the past 30 years, using his own body as subject, tool and material, Antony Gormley has explored the human image in sculpture, investigating the figure as a site of memory and transformation. He has created some of the most ambitious and iconic works of British sculpture over the past two decades, including The Angel of the North at Gateshead; Another Place, now permanently sited on Crosby Beach at Sefton in Lancashire, and Blind Light, the brightly-lit, cloud-filled box in which the bodies of visitors seem to vanish and reappear, shown at the Hayward Gallery in 2007. In 2009, his project One and Other invited members of the public to represent themselves by standing on the fourth plinth in London's Trafalgar Square. Gormley believes that, in a world where nothing is permanent, 'the mind-body instrument is an infinitely extendable tool and that the adventure of being human is far from over.' For Wide Open School he talks with the art critic and historian Michael Newman, whose own interests lie in the image, the trace and time.
Michael Newman is an art historian and critic whose writing is concerned with the image, the trace and time in art and philosophy. He teaches in the Department of Art History, Theory, and Criticism at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, and is Professor of Art Writing at Goldsmiths College in the University of London. His publications include the books Richard Prince: Untitled (couple) and Jeff Wall, and he is co-editor with Jon Bird of Rewriting Conceptual Art.