Steve McQueen

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Steve McQueen is a British artist and filmmaker. Born in London, England in 1969 he grew up in West London, and attended Drayton Manor High School. Before he began his career McQueen was a footballer, turning out for the St. Georges Colts football team. It was after his brief stint as a footballer that he turned his interests towards the arts. Beginning his studies at Hammersmith and West London College to complete an art A level. He then began studying art and design at Chelsea College of Art and Design and then fine art at Goldsmiths College; it was here he sparked an interest in film. In 1993 before beginning his career McQueen left Goldsmiths College to attend the Tisch School in New York City, which did not last long, for he found they were not experimental enough for him.

After his extensive schooling he immediately began his dissent into film and installation, beginning in 1993 with his first silent and major film Bear. He did not begin to work with sound in his films until 1998 when he filmed Drumroll. McQueen also had one major featured film called Hunger, which debuted in 2008. In between his film making McQueen ventured into installation, and in 2007 he created an installation called Queen and Country, which created a major amount of controversy.

McQueen’s films were and still are viewed as installations within a gallery, because while being films they are still considered works of art. He not only uses his films to create performance art and show his viewers that film can be seen as an art form, but he also focuses on the formal elements of film. A few of the elements that he focuses on are point of view, framing, camera movement, speed and lighting. Thus when the viewer watches the films they are not only tak...

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...hralling that one cannot help but be drawn into the film, and fear to look away even when they feel they should. It creates a range of emotions that are both positive and negative.

This film is how McQueen works with all of his art pieces, whether it is about politics and war or about the art of performance. He does not seem to leave the audience dissatisfied in fact they seem to be left wanting more or have had just enough. Each one of his pieces begins from inspiration and a thought, and then is formed into a simple idea and taken to its limits. It is what makes him a well-rounded artist, one who can juggle different genres of the art world and find an equal balance for them. Steve McQueen did what many having being struggling with for years, and are still striving for today; he did not just talk about doing something, he actually went out and did it.

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