it’s the tits!

Sarah Lucas has been out and about the art world since she exhibited with the Young British Artists (YBAs) in the late 1980s. However, until recently, she did not have a solo show in the USA. Until recently indeed, because at this moment, there is a 3 floors big retrospective going on in the New Museum in New York City.

Sarah Lucas’ choice of medium ranges from sculpture to collage to photography and sometimes in between. Au Naturel starts with her sculptures from the 1990s which might be her most famous work. During this time, (and a little before that) she was part of the group we now know as the YBAs (Young British Artists). It is the name given to a loose group of visual artists who first began to exhibit together in London and many of which came from the same art school (Goldsmiths).

Her highly provocative work deals with gender, sexuality, and identity. Humour and fragmentation compete with each other in fueling your fantasy about what you can see in her work. You would think there is nothing sexual about a dürüm döner kebab and two sunny side up eggs. However, place them strategically on a table and it creates the illusion of a female body. Same counts for pairing two oranges with a cucumber. Just put it in the right position, et voila: you got yourself a penis.

But these are not merely regarded as imaginative depictions of reproductive organs, they are in synch with the “abject” theories of the time. Made big by writer Julia Kristeva, it is defined by The Tate defines as artworks which “explore themes that transgress and threaten our sense of cleanliness and propriety, particularly referencing the body and bodily functions.” They literally use Lucas’ Chicken Knickers from 1997 as the cover image.

Lucas is also not afraid of challenging gender norms in art history. In a self-portrait, she looks in the camera, with a 0 fucks giving look, again, two sunny side up eggs on her knockers while manspreading. She badass man.

Tomorrow is the last day of Sarah Lucas: Au Naturel. Catch it while you can! For more information, click here

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Sarah Lucas, Self-portrait with Fried Eggs (1996). Courtesy Sadie ColesHQ, London
Chicken Knickers 1997 by Sarah Lucas born 1962
Sarah Lucas, Chicken Knickers (1997) © Sarah Lucas

 

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Sarah Luca, Au Naturel (1994) © Sarah Lucas
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Sarah Lucas, Two Fried Eggs and a Kebab (1992) © Sarah Lucas
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Sarah Lucas, The Old Couple (1991) © Sarah Lucas
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Sarah Lucas, Mumum (2012) © Sarah Lucas
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Installation shot Sarah Lucas: Au Naturel at the New Museum © Sarah Lucas

 

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Sarah Lucas, Complete Arsehole (1993) © Sarah Lucas
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Sarah Lucas, Is Suicide Genetic? (1996)

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