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Toby Ziegler (b. 1972)
Artist's Resale Right ("Droit de Suite"). Artist's… Read more
Toby Ziegler (b. 1972)

The Liberals (3rd Version)

Toby Ziegler (b. 1972)
The Liberals (3rd Version)
cardboard, gesso and pins, in two parts
(i) 109 7/8 x 90 5/8 x 47¼in. (279 x 230 x 120cm.)
(ii) 126 1/8 x 86 5/8 x 47¼in. (323 x 220 x 120cm.)
Executed in 2008
Simon Lee Gallery, London.
Acquired from the above in 2008.
P. Curtis (et. al.), Toby Ziegler: From the Assumption of the Virgin to Widow/Orphan Control, London 2012 (illustrated
in colour, pp. 118 and 119).
London, Simon Lee Gallery, Toby Ziegler: The Liberals, 2008.
London, Saatchi Gallery, Newspeak: British Art Now, 2010-2011 (installation view illustrated in colour, p. 324).
Adelaide, Art Gallery of South Australia, Saatchi Gallery in Adelaide: British Art Now, 2011 (installation view illustrated in colour, p. 229).
Special notice

Artist's Resale Right ("Droit de Suite"). Artist's Resale Right Regulations 2006 apply to this lot, the buyer agrees to pay us an amount equal to the resale royalty provided for in those Regulations, and we undertake to the buyer to pay such amount to the artist's collection agent.
VAT rate of 20% is payable on hammer price and buyer's premium

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Bianca Chu
Bianca Chu

Lot Essay

Executed in 2008, The Liberals (3rd Version) is a towering, geometric translation of two kitsch Staffordshire pottery dogs, placing these remnants of Victorian domesticity firmly within the present. Designed with 3D design software and constructed entirely from intersecting cardboard panels, both structures have been sporadically decorated with white paint. The juxtaposition of digital and hand-made creative technique is a familiar hybridisation in Ziegler's work, which frequently engages with ideas of the exotic and synthetic. Fabricating his images and sculptural blueprints on a computer, traditional motifs such as landscape, still life, and cultural artefacts are removed from the familiarity of popular consciousness and reconfigured as templates of abstracted information. The thin, sketchy paintwork and imperfect joins between the composite triangles The Liberals (3rd Version) creates additional tension within the work, alerting us to the value of technological precision and its degradation through imperfect translation.

Divorcing his subjects from the weight of their historical context and rendering them ambiguous, Ziegler's work draws our attention to how an object's meaning can change over time. His work, which often look like virtual blueprints for artworks - from classical busts to mantelpiece ornaments -yet to be fleshed out, often suggest archaic totems which once held great significance. Ziegler has bestowed a monumental quality upon TheLiberals (3rd Version)'s kitsch subject matter and humble materials, in a wry comment on notions of good taste within art. Sitting patiently together, like futuristic sphinxes, they have a sense of permanence that contradicts any similarity to design armatures that they might have. In The Liberals (3rd Version), Zieglar has transformed the impersonal precision of the digital into something unique and handmade; the domestic trinket into a monumental effigy, and made the impermanent here to stay.


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