Cigarettes, Candies, and Other Trinkets: Art by Liz Magor

A piece made of a folded-up shirt in a box, with some candy wrappersBeing This (M + M's), paper, textiles, found materials

Liz Magor is a Canadian artist who is currently located in Vancouver. Her works explore objects and their usefulness, and the accumulation of various material vices over a person’s lifetime. The motifs of cigarettes, candies, and other trinkets that one might find in the pockets of an old coat run throughout her body of work.


A box made of translucent rubber, filled with cardboard and papersAll The Names III, silicon rubber, paper, cardboard

I like the aesthetic that Magor’s work takes on – it is reminiscent of cleaning out the attic of an elderly, distant relative. The work often looks like it might smell of mothballs, but the materials used and the way they are arranged is often quite inspired. In one recent exhibition, Magor lined the walls of a gallery with folded articles of clothing, wrapped in tissue paper and placed in open boxes of the sort that a nice shirt would be packaged in upon purchase. These articles of clothing were also packed with bits of detritus like bits of found fabric and candy wrappers.


Magor’s works are sometimes cynical, but they hold a strange, nostalgic charm that draws the viewer in despite any negativity.


A sculpture of a folded tweed jacket with two Toblerone bars sticking out of itTweed (Toblerone), polymerized gypsum

Written by: Dallas Jeffs
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