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The Beauty of Elizabeth Turk

I have always loved the artist Elizabeth Turk. Like her work, she has a gentle beauty and passionate vigor that is her unmistakable aesthetic trademark.   

I first learned about Elizabeth upon discovering her amazingly intricate and at the same time fiercely powerful marble collars. And then there are her curling and climbing marble ribbons and bone-like cages. Takes the breath away.

I had the honor and pleasure of working with Elizabeth when I was Director at Bandini Art, Culver City. He show featured water drips and ripples made on and from slabs of marble that she carved, cut and buffed into magnificent sculptures that defied gravity as they hung from the gallery rafters. 

Elizabeth has always been attracted to “the materiality of nature” with sensitivity towards the natural environment for its inherent beauty, delicacy, strength and fragility. Her 2018 large-scale, installation x intervention x performance Shortline Project, in partnership with Laguna Art Museum’s annual Art & Nature, staged 1,000 volunteers at the shore of the Pacific Ocean carrying umbrellas featuring her sea shell X-ray mandala design and lit from within by LEDs. Accompanied by live music and dancers, the piece brought thousands of onlookers to the surrounding bluffs. Drones filmed the work from above to offer a birds’ eye view of the spectacle. 

Elizabeth turns her eye and spirit to extended and endangered birds in her latest installation Tipping Pointfocuses on, on view at Catalina Art Museum through March 2020. It’s a large, “circular cage-like structure” with “overlapping concentric circles and migrating birds in flight.” The piece is interactive with multiple points of access and viewing. Here’s Lisa Fung’s article in the Los Angels Timesabout Elizabeth and her latest work. 

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