Once We Agree (2015) is built three feet off the ground and to the room’s dimensions, coming to within eighteen inches of the wall on all sides. It gets in its own way both as a table and as an object, constantly slipping out of its capacity as a figure to become the ground for disproportionate conversations and creative misuse. (Let’s meet under the table, let’s crawl across it and meet in the middle, let’s use outside voices to discuss across the distance, perhaps we will more honest with each other in these altered circumstances…) The work, a large plane of beautifully finished wood, functions like the landscape for participants’ interactions. But it also materializes the difficulty of mutual recognition in any space set aside for discussion. It is difficult to pay attention to what other people are actually saying when the (physical, pedagogical, discursive) architecture is built so loudly for only one kind of body. Who are the we who fit around this surface in order to agree?
– Natasha Marie Llorens
Elizabeth Tubergen is a sculptor living and working in Sunnyside, Queens. She makes objects that wedge into a queer, interstitial space between metaphor and metonymy, modernism and post-modernism, masculine modes of production and feminist or post-structural discourse. She holds a BA from Covenant College in Lookout Mountain, GA, and an MFA from Hunter College in NYC. Tubergen is the recipient of a Jacob K. Javits Fellowship, as well as fellowships from the Mustard Seed Foundation, the J. William Fulbright Foundation, the American-Scandinavian Foundation, the MacDowell Colony, the Vermont Studio Center, and Ox-Bow school of art. Her work has been shown in the United States and abroad in group and solo shows.
Image credit: Elizabeth Tubergen, Once We Agree, 2012