Liza Lou: Security Fence, 2005 / Art Basel 2024 Unlimited

Los Angeles-based artist Liza Lou makes sculpture, paintings, drawings, and room-size environments that reflect upon issues of women’s labor and connotations of the sublime. While decoration plays an important part in her practice, Lou creates painstaking work that requires countless hours of artisanal-like expertise. Made over the course of a year with a group of Zulu women from her studio in Durban, South Africa – in which every inch of the imposing 13-square-foot structure has been intricately wrapped with countless glass beads – Security Fence signals a point of connection between glamor and socio-political and cultural inequalities. By calling into question notions of security and fragility, the work seeks to dignify the undignifiable and offers viewers the possibility of transformation inside even the most abject of situations.

Liza Lou (born 1969 in New York) gained fame in 1996 for her groundbreaking installation, Kitchen, made entirely of beads. From 2005-2020, the artist founded and operated a women’s art advocacy program in Durban, South Africa. Lou lives and works in Los Angeles.

Liza Lou: Security Fence, 2005. Thaddaeus Ropac, Lehmann Maupin at Art Basel 2024 Unlimited. Basel (Switzerland), June 13, 2024.

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