Warren King is an American artist living and working in Stockholm, Sweden, particularly known for his life-size figures constructed from cardboard.
In 2010 he traveled to China for the first time and visited Shaoxing, where his ancestors lived for many generations. During his trip he was surprised to be approached on the streets by people who had memories of his grandparents from when they had lived there more than 50 years earlier. When Mr. King left his own home in the U.S. and moved to Stockholm, he reflected on “the nature of personal and cultural connections, the consequences of severing them, and the limits to how much they can ultimately be restored”.
In recreating the individual residents of his grandparents’ village with the ordinary materials of cardboard and glue, viewers can see both his efforts to understand them and the limitations of those efforts. Individuals are both recognizable and abstracted, and the backs of the figures are left unfinished, revealing hollowness and the artist’s meticulous construction.
In addition to the blue links above you can see more of his work here.
Think about it:
- Do you like Warren King’s art? Why or why not?
- How do you think we are connected to the people we have met in our lifetime, and to our histories?
- Do the connections die with us or have a ripple effect that outlast us?