Made during the late 1990s, these drawings involve the greatest range of media to date. Different types of varnish are experimented with - polyurethane giving an opaque, whitish tint, and shellac (derived from the wing cases of beetles) creating a redder hue. Pigment is now rarely used on it's own but where it was, as in UNDER MY SKIN the figures are centred on the page, contrasting strongly with the white paper around them. More generally, the pigment is used to form an effect in which the figure or shape is placed against or sucked into a puddle of poured, coloured varnish. In CAUGHT the figure, accompanied by a human hair also trapped in the pool of orange varnish, resembles an insect imprisoned in a piece of amber. Elsewhere, other extraordinary transformations take place as the paper becomes a charged receptacle receiving unusual tinctures. Soya oil reacts with shellac to create a broken, veining effect in HYPERTROPHY, HARD SHIT and MATTE. For Gormley, 'the transformation/interpenetration of the fluids' in these works 'are evocative of biological processes - enzyme, hormone, intercellular incursions. They also allude to the geological formation of the early rocks from hydrogen clouds'.
Text by Anna Moszynska, from ANTONY GORMLEY DRAWING, Published by The British Museum Press, 2002