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Liz Magor, Stack of Trays, 2008

Vancouver sculptor Liz Magor has been a leading mentor for many of the artists in this show, both through the example of her art, and through her teaching at Emily Carr University of Art + Design. From her beginnings in the seventies, Magor has been fascinated by hippies and drifters, making works that respond to their contingent ways of living. Sculpturally, she has explored the phenomena of hoarding and of replication, creating painstaking, painted, polymerized-gypsum casts of stacks of sweaters, shabby folded towels, old ski gloves and the like, often harbouring within them secret caches of cigarettes and booze. More recently, animal life has cropped up, but in a nature morte kind of way. This stack of party trays is laden with leftovers (some faux, some real), including bits of bread, mickeys of whisky, candies and candy wrappers, and a dead rat. The work feels emblematic of an after-the-party, post-market-meltdown dejection, the indulgences of last night reviewed queasily in the bleak light of day.

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