Marc Quinn

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 Sphinx

Sphinx Photograph courtesy Mary Boone Gallery

Time Out Ratings :

<strong>Rating: </strong>2/5

For Marc Quinn’s fascinating 2004 show at Mary Boone, “The Complete Marbles,” the artist invited people who were missing one or more limbs—either from amputation or birth defect—to pose for him in the style of classical statuary. This time, the artist sought out a more conventional model—Kate Moss—with far less compelling results.

In a series of white-painted bronze sculptures, a limber, bikini-clad Moss bends and flexes in contortions straight out of a yoga class. Legs arch over arms, torso threads through legs in absurdly flexible postures. In an adjoining room, the Topshop-designer reaches nirvana in the show’s least appealing work: Moss transfigured into a wizened golden Buddha with a supermodel head, and stylized body and robe. The droidlike figure has an H.R. Giger alien air to it, a close encounter of the dud kind that looks like little more than a faux-Eastern ornament. It’s a strange homage to a woman who seems to prefer fast kicks to good karma.

Quinn, who remains best known for a self-portrait of his head made of frozen blood, may have thought that by shifting his attention from transgressive models of the body beautiful to a bona fide model, he was advancing the themes of work. But while his marble statues explored standards of beauty both classical and contemporary, his new series explores very little—aside from Moss’s possible future as a Pilobolus dancer.

Mary Boone Gallery, through Sat 30

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