Genzken, Isa Dedicated to the Statue of Liberty, 2015
plaster, paint, mirror foil, plastic, MDF object measurements: 190 x 50 x 50 cm © Isa Genzken / VG Bild-Kunst, Bonn 2018 Courtesy: Galerie Bucholz, Cologne

About the work

With Dedicated to the Statue of Liberty Isa Genzken refers to several important sujets of her career. Formally the sculpture resembles Genzken’s first sculptural assemblages, the Fuck the Bauhaus (New Buildings for New York) group from 2000; with these she on one hand critically examines the legacy of the skyscraper architecture promoted by the international Bauhaus style and on the other hand subverts it by using seemingly makeshift materials. As early as the following year she proposed mirror foil-clad glass towers with New Buildings for Berlin that – named after friends- do not only evoke Foucault’s idea of the two-sided mirror but also express the artist’s feelings of endearment towards her companions. The jacket, casually thrown over the sculpture, is from the artist's private wardrobe. In her later oeuvre, the artist repeatedly works with mannequins, which the artist describes as actors. With Genzken’s characteristic cheekiness this Statue of Liberty presents itself as performative personality. Mounted on a simple creeper this American symbol is, just like the values and ideologies attached to it, no longer anchored but can be easily trans- and exported.

About the artist

Isa Genzken
born 1948 in Bad Oldesloe
lives and works in Berlin

Isa Genzken studied Fine Art and Art History in Hamburg and Berlin before completing her studies in 1997 at Kunstakademie Dusseldorf. After having lived in Dusseldorf, Cologne and New York, she now lives and works in Berlin.

Isa Genzken is widely considered to be one of the most influential artists of the last three decades. In her work she refers to consumer products, media, architecture and urban spaces. Especially New York City with its skyscrapers is an important touch stone in many of her complex pieces that analyse the political and social structures embedded in its architecture from the artist's personal perspective. Her artistic oeuvre touches upon Minimalism and Constructivism but cannot be limited to one artistic style. Even though she is primarily known for her sculptures, she repeatedly uses photography, painting, drawing, collages and film. Genzken often uses objets trouvés together with a variety of other materials.

Isa Genzken’s work has been presented in many solo exhibitions i.a. at Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam (2015), Museum für Moderne Kunst, Frankfurt (2014), Museum of Modern Art, New York (2013), Whitechapel Gallery, London (2009), Museum Abteiberg, Mönchengladbach (2002), Rheinisches Landesmuseum, Bonn (1998).