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Chris Larson

2016 Open Studio Fellowship Artist

Lorraine Motel Sign Resited 2016

34’ 6” x 12’ x 2’ 10”
Fabricated steel and aluminum, polycarbonate, neon

Artist Statement

A replica of the Lorraine Motel sign was relocated from Memphis, TN to Franconia, MN. This continues my investigation in reproducing objects outside of their original contexts by emphasizing the transformations that architecture undergoes in a new setting. The replica of the Lorraine Motel Sign, repositioned in northern Minnesota on the side of highway 8, could be mistaken for a possible new development or past site of a motel. The motel in Memphis, now the National Civil Rights Museum, which is the location of the assassination of Martin Luther King Jr. in 1968. Reverend King was an influential voice for the nation and his powerful
words continue to inspire future generations. This new Lorraine Motel Sign continues a conversation of growth, emphasizing the connection of this historical moment to the contemporary discussion of race, inequality and violence in the south and the north.

This project would not have been possible without the dedication of Franconia’s staff and interns. A special thanks to Ben Janssens of SignMinds Inc.

Chris Larson

Born:  St. Paul, MN, 1966
Resides: St. Paul, MN

• MFA, Sculpture, Yale University School of Art, 1992
• BFA, Sculpture, Bethel College, 1990

Selected Exhibitions
• Land Speed Record, Walker Art Center, Minneapolis, MN, 2016
• The Whitney Biannual, Whitney Museum, New York, NY, 2014
• Heavy Rotation, The View Contemporary Art Space, Salenstein, Switzerland, 2012

Selected Awards
• NEA Visual Arts Grant Award, 2013
• McKnight Artist Fellowship, 2012
• Bush Artist Fellowship, 2006

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