'With the same intensity he destroyed his life, it is a logical progression to now use pencil to rebuild'.
Charles Asprey in conversation with Kirsty Wark, 'How Michael Landy made a day job out of drawing', The Tate Channel, 9th October 2008.
Following the systematic destruction of all his worldly possessions in his seminal Breakdown (2001), Landy went back to basics in 2008 and focussed on what remained of importance in his life: people. His 70 portraits, simply rendered in pencil on paper, are painstakingly detailed; they capture every wrinkle and blemish with almost scientific precision. The two full days spent in extremely close proximity with each of his subjects allowed Landy to build a relationship between himself and his model through the drawing, and in the case of his family members, to reconnect: 'it's the first time I've really looked at my sisters in years' (Landy in conversation with Rachel Campbell-Johnston, 'Michael Landy: the man who had nothing', The Times, October 7th 2008). The current work is an intimate sketch of Landy's long-term partner and fellow artist Gillian Wearing.
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