ancouver artist Liz Magor has spent 35 years pushing the boundaries of perception and expectation with works that are as much about cultural disenfranchisement as they are critiques of modernist form and function. In a Summer 2009 print edition feature, “The Outlaw,” writer Deborah Campbell unpacks Magor’s award-winning practice on the heels of her touring exhibition “The Mouth and other storage facilities.”
The new bronze sculpture is in the form of a hollow tree trunk, sealed at both ends with a sleeping bag protruding from one end. It was cast directly from an actual willow tree, and the sleeping bag is a cast rubber mold made to withstand extremes in climate and temperature. The subject is human shelter and refuge in nature, raising conflicting feelings about shelter and security. The return to nature is an idealistic impulse, invoking the benevolence of nature and the deep woods as a natural retreat. Yet as Liz Magor states, such retreats “also suggest the condition of last resort: for the fugitive, the misanthrope, and the disenfranchised.”..