mixed media, 4 painted objects
9 × 25.5 × 10 cm
Inv. No. 0322abcd
Lucy McKenzie operates within a diverse historical reference system that imbricates elements of politics, pop and party culture, music, design, architecture, and fashion. Her work is collaborative – for example, she produces fashion for the fashion label Atelier E.B. with Beca Lipscombe – and multidisciplinary. From paintings, to sculptural arrangements, to still-lifes, she ranges from stage design and living room archetypes to life-size environments of furniture and interior decoration.
In Brussels, where she now lives, McKenzie trained classically as a commercial decorative painter and specialized in trompe l'oeil painting, which she applies to many of her illusionistic paintings and objects. The criterion of craftsmanship is just as important as the cultural or the local context, which, as the artist never tires of emphasizing, shape our taste and ideas of beauty. Appropriation of already existing objects, images, and formats has been the fundamental process since the beginning of her career, a reductive procedure confronting artistic originality and precise authorship that the Pictures Generation of the 1970s took for the first time to absurd limits.
The work in the evn collection shows 4 candy boxes from the Viennese confectionery Altmann & Kühne. Lucy McKenzie appropriates the models of two designers from the Wiener Werkstätte, the Hungarian Kató Lukáts and the Austrian Emmy Zweybrück. Lovingly and with remarkable precision, she copies the designs of the two graphic designers. This romantic gesture of remembrance simultaneously recalls the resurgence of nationalism, as well as religious and folkloric traditions in the 1920s and 1930s, ideologies that were disseminated and reinforced through everyday objects and eventually led to fascism and National Socialism.
Brigitte Huck, 2019 (translation: Virginia Dellenbaugh)Continue reading
Pride and Prejudice. Art and Craft – A Love Story, Universität für Angewandte Kunst, Vienna, 2023
Small Medium Large. Sculptures and Objects from the evn collection, evn sammlung, Maria Enzersdorf, 2022
Wallpaper #3, evn sammlung, Maria Enzersdorf, 2019
Pride and Prejudice. Art and Craft – A Love Story (Exhibition Booklet), Vienna 2023, p. s. p.