Draining All the Artist's Blood to Sculpt a Head
Marc Quinn is a British artist who was inspired by Rembrandt's idea to make a portrait of himself every few years, and he decided to do the same thing ... only with blood. His own blood. Which he freezes, and uses to make terrifying sculptures of his head.
Why couldn't he just use the blood to paint the portrait, like a normal crazy artist?
Each blood head takes Quinn 9 pints of blood to make -- that's about the amount that's in the human body. He collects it by going to the doctor every six weeks for an entire year and withdrawing a pint each time, like when you donate blood, except without the part where it helps anyone. Quinn has created five of these heads so far, one every five years since 1991, with the purpose of documenting his aging process and nose hair growth.
Hyde or Die
"2001 ... still creepy as all hell."
Most of the heads are in private collections, and in 2009, one of them was sold to the National Portrait Gallery in the U.K. for $465,000. Obviously, storing and displaying the bloody things is a pain in the ass -- the heads have to be kept in a freezer display at all times, otherwise they'll start melting down like the Nazis at the end of Raiders of the Lost Ark. Imagine the museum workers mopping up a puddle of hundreds of thousands of dollars in human blood from the floor.
"Hey, wait a minute, this is just cherry Kool-Aid!"