The Unstable Self
Chaise découpée [Cut-Up Chair], 1964-2008
The chair takes on a special role in the oeuvre of Jacques Lizène, the self-proclaimed 'Minor Master of Liège'. Lizène likes to turn the (art) world upside-down. According to him, art and life are intertwined. In addition, it is not the form of the artwork, but rather the attitude of the artist that is important. Lizène’s work critically questions the place of the artist, art, and the art world.
Chairs are one of Lizène’s preferred mediums, because they are able to adopt numerous forms and functions. They are both bodies and frameworks: seated, resting, damaged entities, but also carriers, stretchers, frames and structures. This dual identity closely correlates with two elements from Lizène's work: genetics and death.
By cutting and reassembling two different chairs, Lizène creates a sculptural object. In these sculptures a link is clearly established with genetics, the bringing together of two structures to create a new shape. The chairs were once ordinary, everyday objects; by reformulating and fusing them, these hybrids become more than the sum of their parts.