Four French Deaths in Western Canada
April 8 – December 16, 2018
Ken Lum was born in Vancouver, Canada and currently resides in Philadelphia where he is the Chair of Fine Arts at the University of Pennsylvania’s School of Design. An innovator of post-conceptual art, Lum’s work has been widely exhibited since the 1970’s. He explores issues of self-identity, immigration, language, and spatial politics through painting, sculpture, and photography.
Against dingy white backgrounds, four obituaries of individuals from Western Canada are displayed on life-size wood panels*, creating the illusion of an old newspaper. In the artists series Four French Deaths in Western Canada, each person’s life is wrapped up into a few brief sentences. The viewer is forced to reflect on the immortality of humankind and is left questioning who these people were or if they ever even existed.