Cut-out fur costumes attached to a wall

Nicola L. was born in 1932 in Morocco and died in 2019 in Los Angeles, where her estate now resides. In the 1960s she worked in Ibiza and Paris and was part of an intellectual and artistic cohort invested in pop, which included Alberto Greco, Yves Klein, and Marta Minujín. Her overall practice is full of humor and wit: men as sofas, knobs as nipples, unchaste applications of faux fur. She brilliantly made literal the objectification of the female form. Generally her practice tackles representations of the body and of the social persona through conceptual works, functional and domestic objects, furniture, installations, performances, and films. She sustained through the years a diaristic and dreamlike drawing practice. Nicola L. was interested in exploring the skin and surface of things, and her caricatural anthropomorphic objects interrogate the construction of subjectivity, especially in relation to her feminist concerns. In the 1960s she started developing her Pénétrables, a series of canvases into which viewers could introduce parts of their bodies and get into the skin of the painting. A magnum opus of this series, La chambre en fourrure (1969), was conceived as a playful environment, and yet it bore a strong political statement addressing the individual’s social envelope. Nicola L.’s work was exhibited at the Sculpture Center in Long Island City, New York, in 2017.