Elizabeth Englander's Sculpture Finds the Life in Waste
Art Young Artists 2021

Elizabeth Englander's Sculpture Finds the Life in Waste

One of the first sculptures that Liz made was based on Isis and Horus—an Egyptian Madonna scene. “It’s about loneliness,” she tells me, “this contact that you’re never able to achieve.” She often works with the form of grand sculpture—monuments, icons and relics—but translated through personal materials—her late mother’s dish towels, her own old swimsuits and childhood ribbons. In a sculpture called Virginia (2019) for her 2019 “Headmaster” show at Los Angeles’s Smart Objects, she poked skewers into the gauze of her sister’s prom dress, drawing out the material’s pucker and frill to get at the growing pains of adolescence. “I suppose it’s a way of letting go,” she says, when I ask her how the process of sculpture changes her relationship to those objects.

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