The work of Mark Anstee prior to Early Redemption concentrated on developing large-scale temporary drawings live in public museums and galleries that explored the accumulation of singular iconic figures over time. Site and time specific in a very tangible sense, Early Redemption became part of the architecture. Like Encounter, a wall drawing commissioned for the In Flanders Field Museum in 2003, it means that this piece, designed to exist for a limited period of time, cannot physically leave the building without being destroyed- Mark Anstee
Mark Anstee’s drawing is heroic in scale and reflects his fascination with monuments and memorial, yet he aims to explore the need to remember without the rhetoric of permanence. The fragility of his single line drawings focuses us on the particular prompting us to see a single man.
The drawing of Early Redemption was improvised on the spot, in the gallery but developed with a vocabulary of images that became a physical memory in his hand through an intensive period of training in the studio. Anstee is adamant his work is not a performance nor a presentation. He wants people to follow the process, to witness it;
I want to slow people’s looking down, they have to come back and look again. Mark Anstee, Artist
His presence in the gallery was an invitation to look through him to the line he is making, to see something appear out of nothing.