Marc Quinn – Frozen Waves, Broken Sublimes at Somerset House

Shaped by memories from the past and future expectations, bites of dreams cover the shore of the sea of life like debris of shooting stars spread across the universe.

During the past months of September and October, Marc Quinn turned the Somerset House in London into a kind of urban beach of the Thames. The British artist installed his latest monumental works within the historic Edmond J. Safra Fountain Court, articulating the transition between the urban strand and the water of the river. Titled Frozen Wave and Broken Sublime, the sculptures originate from the remnants of shells eroded by the endless action of the waves and marine debris manipulated by humans’ actions. Before they disappear and become sand, all conch shells end up in a similar form, suggesting a self-portrait by nature. Others are modelled from shells which have been broken into by humans in order to eat the flesh inside and highlight how our relationship to nature is shaped by needs of the moment. By placing the cast stainless steel pieces in the courtyard surrounded by the fountains, the water of the ocean which formed the sculptures’ shapes is linked to the tamed water of pipes, conduits and drains of the city of London. Marc Quinn‘s installation aimed to explore the ecological impact of man on nature.

  • Marc Quinn – Frozen Waves, Broken Sublimes at Somerset House

    Article by
    Cecilia Musmeci



    Cecilia Musmeci


    Marc Quinn

    Special Thanks

    Somerset House