Ian McKay was a pivotal figure in the history of Australian sculpture. He studied under Lyndon Dadswell at the National Art School, Sydney from 1958. He attended the St Martin′s School of Art for a short time under Anthony Caro and Phillip King.
When McKay felt that his current abstract carvings were becoming a bit stultified in the late sixties he went looking for a new way of working and turned to constructed steel sculpture, which for him combined both a carving and a modelling aesthetic. For McKay, sculpture should say something fresh and positive about the past while at the same time be opening up towards a new perception. To achieve his ends McKay was never dictated to by his material, in fact steel became just another material like clay, which he used for all its expressive qualities.
Ian McKay passed away in 2007 at 71 years of age.