An easy definition of sculpture

A tongue pierced by a single nail

Alexandra Phillips's mixed media sculpture focuses on social critique through the lens of the carnivalesque. A recipient of Canada Council and British Columbia Arts Council awards, among others, Alex’s work has been exhibited across North America. She has contributed articles to numerous publications, covering subjects such as art and ethics, Canadian artists in Berlin, and the use of shock as an art supply. Alex has also presented papers at international conferences on subjects ranging from creative thinking to the merging of art and anthropology. Alex is a graduate of the University of Washington, from which she holds Masters degrees in Sculpture and Sociocultural Anthropology. She is an Associate Professor at Emily Carr University in Vancouver where she teaches courses in Visual Art and Critical Studies.

Alexandra says:

"This work was inspired by a conversation during a Royal Society Zoom meeting. We struggled to reach consensus about how to define sculpture beyond a simplistic notion of "three-dimensional works of the imagination." Every boundary we set seemed to evoke exceptions. Barnett Newman's old joke that "sculpture is what you bump into when you back up to look at the paintings" seemed the best we could do. In the end we concluded that sculpture as a category transcends verbal description. My work alludes to the limitations of language to define categories of art."


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