Damien Hirst had “Mother and Child Divided.” Tracey Emin made a quilt with the names of people she’d slept with. Marina Abramović got an audience to attack her with a razor blade and wield a loaded gun, because art.
For 32-year-old Mitchell McLanaghan, the medium is not severed animal carcass suspended in formaldehyde or a canvass of dead flies, but the wax wrapper of every British child's favourite snacking cheese: Babybel.
According to the Newcastle Chronicle, the Toon-based artist uses the discarded red wax casing to create sculptures of figures from television shows and films. McLanaghan, who was diagnosed with autism as a child, has moulded everything from Lord of the Rings characters to Wallace and Gromit.
Talking to the Chronicle, McLanaghan’s sister Margaret explained: “Mitchell has autism and he’s on a very high spectrum...But when you see what he can do, it really blows you away.”
She continued: “All of us are always buying Babybel so we can give Mitchell the wax. It’s always in our shopping carts. But he needs a lot more.”
Photos of McLanaghan’s work are exhibited on his Facebook page, Mitchells Marvellous Models, and have garnered nationwide support. With over a thousand members on his group and 20 years experience, McLanaghan has received donations of Babybel wax from all over the globe—including from the Babybel company themselves.
The Turner Prize is just a matter of time.