(United States of America 1971 – )
122.5 x 157.3 cm image; 123.0 x 157.5 cm sheet; 126.1 x 160.2 x 5.9 cm frame
Shannon Ebner was educated at Bard College, NY and Yale University graduating MFA in 2000. She has lived and worked in Los Angeles for 7 years. She held a solo exhibition at PSI New York in 2007, in 2008 she will be represented in the Whitney Biennale and LA County Museum of Art will publish a book of her work. Ebner teaches at USC Roski.
Shannon Ebner’s photographs consistently involve a visceral experience with language, as well as an economy of materials linking her to the conceptual practice of Ed Ruscha and Bruce Nauman. Words and signs are treated as physical entities, subject to destruction and decay. Her laconic style and fascination with palindromes links her to the traditions which appear in both visual and literary forms in the U.S. All of her work deals in one way and another with the nature of politics and monuments. Lisa Turvey wrote in ‘Aperture #188’, 2007: ‘Ebner knows that words and photographs convey temporary, and often false realities…’ so her constant recontextualising of image and sign is not only a way of acknowledging the decay of meaning but also taking hold of meaning and reaffirming its power as a constructive force.
‘Sculpture involuntaires’ refers to Brassaï’s 1933 photo-essay on the photography of debris and graffiti. Ebner’s construction (a pew? a coffin?) in a desolate landscape contains the letters used in her earlier works. This particular piece refers particularly to the problems of aesthetics and history and to her struggles with these.
F. Stocchi, Artforum, 'Critics' picks', Mar 2007, (illus.).
Making sense: contemporary LA photo artists, Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney, 11 Feb 2012–13 May 2012