By Felicity Carter
American artist, Liza Lou is holding her first solo show in more than 10 years as the inaugural show of Lehmann Maupin's new gallery location in the Chelsea district of New York City. Her show entitled, Liza Lou: The Classification and Nomenclature of Clouds will consist of her recent bodies of work that she has produced over the last three years, including The Clouds which was exhibited at the 21st Biennale of Sydney. Additionally, she will be presenting her drawings, one of which took a whopping eleven years to complete.
The artist first gained attention when her work entitled, Kitchen was showcased at the New Museum of Contemporary Art, New York. Since then, albeit twenty years, Lou has lured her audience with large-scale sculptures in her signature medium of glass beads. She has created a community as she has developed a communal studio practice with female artisans in South Africa and Brazil. Her work is often in response to social and political concerns where she emphasizes repetition, formal perfection, and materiality.
Tell us about the show... Classification and Nomenclature of Clouds is my first gallery exhibition in NYC in 10 years, and will combine painting, sculpture, relief, drawing, and video. Included in the show is The Clouds, a 50 foot long woven painting comprised of a grid of 600 beaded cloths, which were hand sewn in my Durban studio. I then painted atop the beads — and then, as a form of mark making, I took a hammer and smashed the beads away with a hammer, revealing the paint-stained network of thread beneath. With the opening of the new Lehmann Maupin gallery, it seemed like the opportune time to present this new body of work which was sparked by my move back to LA from Durban. The exhibition also includes a series of sculpture and wall reliefs from my Terra series where I used a technique using different sizes of spheres sewn together into complex, cell-like structure. I will also be showing two large-scale ink drawings that took more than 11 years to complete.