Fish Relief

Oliver Laric

Fish Relief, 2020

Oliver Laric (b.1981 in Innsbruck, Austria) converts qualities of the digital age, such as reproduction, limitless variability, and instant distribution into the physical realm. His 3D scanned sculptures challenge our understanding of art and conventional modes of arts institutionalization, including the complex legal ambiguities of copyright and its rights. His effort to make art that is traditionally locked in a museum, accessible to an increasingly digital society, regardless of social, geographical or cultural boundaries, on the one hand, challenges traditional modes of art institutionalism, while on the other, democratizes art, by stripping it of constrains to private ownership.

Despite its formal resemblance to Laric’s earlier sculptures, Fish Relief (2020) is based on a drawing and not a scan of an existing sculpture. Providing the artist with greater flexibility in determining the final size of the work, its translation into a 3D shape has led to formal deformations, abstracting its subjects further from life. The theme of an animal being held looks at the objectification of life forms when becoming part of the food chain industry. The commodification of life, ownership, and transformation in the supply chain scrutinizes our increasingly artificial relation to nature and alienation from its forms.

Oliver Laric has exhibited his work at S.M.A.K. (Ghent), Museum of Contemporary Art Cleveland, Guggenheim (Bilbao, Spain), São Paulo Biennale, ICA Boston, Centre Pompidou (Paris), Whitechapel Gallery (London), ExtraCity Kunsthalle (Antwerp), Kunstlerhouse Benthanien (Berlin), Palais de Tokyo (Paris), Saint Louis Art Museum (St. Louis, Missouri), among others. Laric's work is part of the collection of the Walker Art Center (Minneapolis, MN), Nouveau Musée National de Monaco (Monaco), MUMOK (Vienna), Ferdinandeum (Innsbruck, Austria), Kunsthaus Bregenz (Bregenz, Austria), The Collection Museum (Lincoln, UK), Kunstsammlung (Dusseldorf, Germnay), Museum für Moderne Kunst (Frankfurt, Germany), Cleveland Art Museum (Cleveland, Ohio), Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden (Washington, D.C.), Stedelijk Museum (Amsterdam), Frac Bretagne (Rennes, France), among others.