est. July 2009

Lisa Krause's Artwork (2003-Present)

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Clusterbomb Bears: Chicago

I incorporated my background in photography into this series, installing my small sculptures of Clusterbomb Bears in various locations in the city of Chicago and documenting the installations in the style of a photojournalist. The Clusterbomb Bears are cast plaster and found objects, faux finished using a process that takes on the same look of the casing of decomposing metal bombs found in bombsites. Using the same teddy bear symbol from my previous Watermine Bears, I am referencing a symbol of security and children that originated in the United States.

While we do not live amongst bombs, we must imagine what it would be like. Much of the population of the world is subjected to these situations, often at the hands of countries like ours. Clusterbombs are perhaps the most horrible of all weapons currently used in conflicts. Indiscriminate bombing in residential areas where civilians are maimed and killed by unexploded bombs waiting in the rubble. Children will find these bombs and think they are food or toys. The military will often argue that it is not cost effective to clean up after bombing campaigns. What I am hoping to achieve through this series is to enable civilians of our culture to imagine what it must be like to live amongst bombs. To help us understand what others are going through, and help pressure our military as well as the military of other countries - to stop using such weapons.

As a sculptor, I am influenced by international photojournalism, conversations, and news reports. I have a history of political activism and community organizing, and use this in my conceptual sculptures to address cultural problems and inspire thoughtful change in communities. During the course of this project, I spoke with people in the communities in which I installed my work as my project led to occasional random observers. The dialogues included discussions about military recruitment practices, bomb testing in Vieques, PR, and current military campaigns.

Clusterbomb Bears, creation and installation

For this series, I had been working with imagery by photojournalist Sean Sutton and Mines Advisory Group America (MAG). The images he provides cover the efforts of MAG to clear military debris from former conflict zones in areas such as Iraq, Cambodia, Lebanon, and Vietnam. Inspired by the visual impact of his documentation of the devastation coupled with news reports of people attempting to piece their lives together amongst bombs in Afghanistan and Iraq from National Public Radio, I wanted to help us envision the international landscape by setting it here.

Friday, June 15, 2007

The Remains of Our Immortality, Sites 1 and 2

the remains of our immortality: sites 1 and 2.
6’x3’x10” each
mixed media (cardboard, wood glue, jute, scrap wood)

I carved two 6’ long x3’ high reliefs in cardboard. The cardboard came from my work in retail. I decided to make this piece in the style of an archeological expedition, as if our culture were halted today and unearthed in the future –like what had happened in Pompeii. What would people think we valued? What could they tell about our culture based on our relics, our garbage? This was what I was thinking about when I began to undertake this project.

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Totem: At the End of the Day

totem: at the end of the day.
mixed media (carved televisions, video, acrylic, plywood)

I formed totem poles from discarded televisions, carving traditional characters into the surface and accenting the detail in acrylic paint. The video in the screens addresses common elements of our human evolution across cultures. I created this piece to emphasize the irony of cultural evolution in which western societies feel that anything else is backward. The symbolism in using outdated televisions emulate the iconic characters used by Northwestern Native American tribes to teach tribal history and protect villages addresses the nature of our current society. Our wastefulness, as well as our passive reliance on convenient media to educate and inform ourselves.

Security: Bear Mines 5308174 and 73287489

security: bear mine 53009174 and bear mine 73287489
2 pieces, 2’x2’x6’ each
mixed media (cast fiber glass, scrap metal, tow-chain, concrete)

More than a year ago, among the releases of information provided by our Department of Homeland Security; was the revelation that the Taliban would be sending bombs disguised as teddy bears in the mail to random American citizens. I visualized the exploding bears, and found it ironic that children will use teddy bears for security, and that water mines are defensive weapons used to secure an area. I decided to create teddy bear water mines in a reaction to the paranoia over terrorism and good/evil in our culture, as well as for the children that are fighting in the wars.