With a career spanning more than 40 years, Liz Magor is regarded as one of the most influential contemporary sculptors, inspiring many young artists with themes that include consumerism and individualism.
Liz Magor is being celebrated with a retrospective of her works which is underway at MAMAC in Nice, running for the next six months.
Born in Winnipeg, Canada in 1948, Liz Magor has won many major prizes such as a Governor General Award in Visual and Media Arts and the Audain Prize for lifetime achievement, and represented her native country at prestigious international venues, including the Venice Biennale. She also had a career as a respected educator at the Ontario College of Art and Design before moving to Vancouver to continue her teaching at the Emily Carr University of Art and Design.
The fascinating exhibition at MAMAC brings together a diverse assortment of the artist’s creations from the last three decades. Blankets, towels, cardboard boxes, ashtrays…Liz Magor’s sculptures and installations are composed of found everyday objects that are either used as ready-mades or replicated with other materials through mold making techniques to question the ambivalent relationships humans have with consumer goods. What is the cycle of life of those objects? How are they created? How and why do they enter our lives? Why are they later discarded?
Liz Magor is fascinated by the culture of mass production and the fact that most people believe that their status is highly defined by the objects they possess, whether they need or not. Describing her art practice, the artist said: “For my purposes, objects can be divided into two categories: those that are provided by the world, and those that I provide by making them in the studio.”
This is why Magor’s creations are constantly asking us to reflect on our interaction with things as she makes a point of showing that most of the goods we use today are so standardized that they are totally deprived of any individual features and can easily be replaced by one another.
The fact that the casts she creates from real objects use materials that are different from the original ones, creates a grey area between the reality and its representation. It is up to the viewer to decide if the work they are looking at is an object or a sculpture, if it is real or just a replica. A fun game that raises interesting questions about the society we live in!
The exhibition runs until the 13th of May, 2018, open daily from 11am to 6pm, closed Mondays.
Place Yves Klein
06364 Nice cedex 4
All photos courtesy and © Natja Igney