In conversation with Liza Lou about Beading in South Africa
Neue Journal | Monday, Feb 22, 2016
Portraits: Tyler Nevitt for NeueJournal
Liza Lou rose to prominence in the art world in 1996 with her groundbreaking contemporary piece, Kitchen, which re-created, over a five-year period, a replica of a kitchen made entirely with beads. Since then, the New York native has relocated to KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa to open a studio where she has symbiotically employed local women with a mastery in beadwork, creating unique pieces that are testaments to the labor of patience. Having established herself as one of the leading contemporary artists, it was only logical for Lou to sit down for a conversation with Lawrence Weschler, the author and cultural critic who boasts long-term relationships with everyone from The New Yorker (where he was a staff writer) to other visionaries, such as David Hockney and Robert Irwin. The two discussed poetry, translating experience into art, and Zulu beadwork.