Robert Longo, a leading protagonist of the “Pictures Generation,” has worked across drawing, photography, painting, sculpture, performance, and film to make provocative critiques of the anaesthetizing and seductive effects of capitalism, mediatized wars, and the cult of history in the United States.
Liz Swig, the founder of LIZWORKS, collaborates with celebrated contemporary artists to create limited-edition pieces that reflect on the moment and push the boundary between jewellery and art. LIZWORKS brings together modern vision with the craft and traditions of jewellery making and ultimately provides the artists with an entirely new medium to explore their ideas and the opportunity to see their work from a different perspective.
LIZWORKS has joined forces with the American artist Robert Longo to create a collection of jewellery, which comments on the state of our union. Items in the collection take the form of a rose and a bullet hole and come in editions of 15. The pieces harness the enormous power and scale of Longo’s work with immediacy and intimacy.
As Longo recalls
‘’The contexts of these two images differ greatly. My rose series (2003–2013) was part of a group of large-scale charcoal drawings I called “The Essentials,” representative of Genesis, the creation of the universe populated by images of our collective unconscious. The image of a blooming rose presents a living thing in a state of becoming, whereas the bullet hole offers an image of aftermath–suggesting an act the viewer did not witness. The bullet hole image represented in this collaboration is based on my large-scale charcoal drawing Untitled (Bullet Hole in Window, January 7, 2015) (2015–2016). The piece is a statement on rampant gun violence. It was essential to acknowledge this topic, rather than to dispose of it, to scroll past it. As an artist, I feel a moral imperative, and I hope to make work that helps people to see better and to take a position.’’
‘Through making large-scale charcoal drawings of highly emotive images, I have been exploring how the intimate medium of drawing can slow down the consumption of images. I am interested in how this project provides a different approach to the intimacy in how images of my work are consumed.”
This collaboration encapsulates the ideas of fragility and hope, destruction and regeneration, darkness and light, both contained in these two arresting images of Rose and Bullet Hole.
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