Situated in the contemporary American sublime, Liz Ensz presents a comparative study of the mass-cultural investment in disposability and the human desire to imagine permanence through emblems, monuments, and commemoration. While disparate intentions inform these impulses- one to remember, and the other to quickly forget- each will materially describe our society to future generations.
Liz Ensz was born in Minnesota to a resourceful family of penny-savers, metal scrappers, and curators of cast-offs. She received her BFA in Fiber from the Maryland Institute College of Art, and her MFA in Fiber and Material Studies from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. Her work has been exhibited internationally, including Franconia Sculpture Park, Shafer, MN; The Pelham Art Center, Pelham, NY; Spaces, Cleveland, OH; Boston Center for the Arts, Boston, MA; East Carolina University, Greenville, NC; and Goucher College, Baltimore, MD. Ensz has been awarded Fellowship Residencies at Salem Art Works, Playa, and Blue Mountain Center, and has been the recipient of The Creative Baltimore Fund Grant, The Gilroy Roberts Fellowship for Engraving, The Edes Fellowship Semi-finalist Prize, and The Gelman Travel Fellowship. She currently teaches at The School of the Art Institute of Chicago, in the departments of Sculpture and Fiber and Material Studies. She is a founding collective member of The Visitor Center Artist Camp, a DIY arts testing ground in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan.
My work examines designed and found icons of the American character in search of our underlying values and our aspirations as individuals and as a society. At the heart of my practice lies a determined material engagement, scavenger impulse, and a sincere