Lauren Berkowitz

(1965 – )

Onion sac wall

Not on display
Further information

To make 'Onion sac wall', Lauren Berkowitz collected and recycled lurid red and orange bags originally used to hold onions. The woven bags have been sewn together to create a large, amorphous rectangle, which hangs out from the wall like a kind of secondary architecture. This simple gesture is charged with an array of associations. The scale of the work refers to monumental sculpture, but conversely Berkowitz's 'wall' is porous and delicate, invoking a more fragile membrane like the translucent skins the bags once held, stockings or fishing nets. The work's minimal aesthetic also recalls abstract monochrome painting, and yet the functional history of Berkowtiz's onion bags remains powerfully present. By massing them together, she amplifies their symbolic power as objects of containment, the excess of economic exchange, and traces of repetitive domestic labour such as shopping, carrying and chopping. While the latter sometimes induces innocuous ‘onion tears’, Berkowitz’s installation suggests the latent potential for a flood of deep emotion.

Sculpture, Installation
plastic onion bags
400.0 x 600.0 x 20.0 cm (irreg.)
Signature & date

Not signed. Not dated.

Contemporary Collection Benefactors 2019
Accession number
© Lauren Berkowitz