In the 1960s Laing was a Pop Art painter, working in New York for most of that decade. He was part of the circle around Andy Warhol and Robert Indiana. Gradually, he moved away from painting to produce abstract sculpture, adopting the bright colours and innovative modern materials of Pop.
With his return to Scotland, however, in the 1970s, Laing began to investigate the potential of reintroducing figuration into his sculpture. These all probe the boundaries between realistic depiction of the figure and the abstract simplified form that it occupies. Many of these works were also ruminations on the theme of feminine beauty, and in particular his love for his wife Galina.