“A Set of Ways of Engaging”: Lisa Lee on Thomas Hirschhorn & Materiality
“The work is the physical object but it's a whole set of ways of engaging with the world that constitute a practice.”
In this episode
Caro Fowler talks with Lisa Lee, who was the Florence Gould Foundation Fellow in spring 2020. While at the Clark, Lisa worked on a project tentatively titled “Thomas Hirschhorn’s Real Abstraction, 1984-94,” which focuses on a critical period for the Swiss artist, who is known for his work in collage and monument-making, primarily with found materials. Through working with these materials, often in public spaces, Hirschhorn’s art grapples with the political, economic, and social conditions of contemporary life. Lisa also discusses her book on Isa Genzken, a German artist known for her use of common materials in sculpture, installation, photography, and film. This conversation explores Lisa’s interest in the tension of what she describes as work that highlights the possibility of art and its everyday political power.
Lisa Lee is an associate professor of art history at Emory University. She is the author of Isa Genzken: Sculpture as World Receiver (University of Chicago Press, 2017), editor of Isa Genzken (October Files, 2015), and co-editor, with Hal Foster, of Critical Laboratory: The Writings of Thomas Hirschhorn (MIT Press, 2013). She is at work on a monograph analyzing the first decade of Thomas Hirschhorn’s artistic career, focusing on his solutions to form, display, and distribution.
This conversation was recorded on April 8, 2020.
Thomas Hirschhorn (Swiss, b. 1957), Untitled (Early Collage), 1986.