In this episode of A brush with..., Mark Leckey talks to Ben Luke about his influences, from art to literature, film and music, and the cultural experiences that have shaped his life and work.
Born in 1964 in Birkenhead, Wirral, Leckey grew up in a working-class family and studied fine art at Newcastle Polytechnic, graduating in 1990. His enormously varied and experimental work sits on the cusp of digital and analogue worlds. Using video, sound, performance and installation, he explores the meanings and effects of images, consumer products, media and technologies, alongside themes including class and capitalism, interwoven with personal and collective histories.
Deeply subjective and emotional, yet seeking universal truths, Leckey’s practice has made him one of the most influential artists working today. In 2008, he won the Turner Prize for an exhibition of his moving image works, including Industrial Light and Magic (2008) and Cinema in the Round (2007).
He tells us about his preoccupation with pre-Renaissance icons, his early interest in Mexican Muralism, the influence of Lutz Bacher and Mike Kelley, his fascination with a range of musical artists, and his use of YouTube, TikTok and other platforms in making his work. Plus, he answers our questions about daily rituals, the one work of art he would choose to live with, and the ultimate question: what is art for?