Michael Landy : Saints Alive (PB)

Michael Landy : Saints Alive (PB)


Writer and Narrator

Colin Wiggins is Special Projects Curator and Jennifer Sliwka is Howard and Roberta Ahmanson Fellow in Art and Religion; both at the National Gallery, London. Richard Cork is an art critic and writer based in London.

Published to mark an exhibition at the National Gallery 23 May – 24 November 2013.

In 2010, Michael Landy became the eighth Associate Artist at the National Gallery, London, where he was given a studio in which to make new work inspired by the collection. During his residency, he became fascinated with depictions of saints in sacred paintings. Intrigued by tales that chimed with his own anti-materialist philosophy, he decided to combine these narratives with a long-standing interest in kinetic sculpture. The resulting works bring to life Old Master paintings for a twenty-first century audience. Comprising seven large-scale, interactive kinetic sculptures, they include a three-metre wide ‘wheel of misfortune’ based on the martyrdom of Saint Catherine of Alexandria, a self-flagellating Saint Jerome and a self-defacing Saint Apollonia.

This book is an insight into Landy’s time as Associate Artist, tracing the development of his ideas and the stories that inspired him. In a fascinating conversation with art critic Richard Cork, the artist talks compellingly about his thought processes and the personal beliefs that guide his working practices.

A record of the Saints Alive exhibition, this publication features installation photography of Landy’s new sculptures and contains short texts about the saints and paintings that feature in the works.


  • Artist chronology
  • Michael Landy in the National Gallery by Colin Wiggins
  • Michael Landy in conversation with Richard Cork
  • Saints Recycled by Jennifer Sliwka
  • List of works

View spreads of this book (1.4 MB PDF)

Video Clips

In this clip: Michael Landy discovered the National Gallery's collection through a voyage of discovery.

In this clip: Inspiration behind Michael Landy’s Saint Catherine’s wheels, including the 3 meter wide wheel of fortune.

In this clip: How Michael Landy creates his mechanical sculptures combining 1970’s kinetic arts and Renaissance Saints.

Product Code 1035476
Author Colin Wiggins, Jennifer Sliwka, Richard Cork
publisher National Gallery Company
published May 2013
format Paperback with flaps
pages 80
colour Illustrations 62
Dimensions 270 x 210 mm
ISBN 9781857095609
GTIN 9781857095609
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