Lorna Simpson is best known for her photography, which often combines images of black women with text as a way to explore society’s relationship with race, sex, and ethnicity. Frequently elusive, her works involve the viewer in the creation of their meaning while also confronting the viewer with the underlying racism still found in American culture. Over time, Simpson’s work has grown to include sculpture, allowing the artist another method for exploring the relationship between words and image. With III (Three Wishbones in a Wood Box), Simpson deepens that focus, centering on the wishbone, a key image throughout her work. Drawing on the metaphorical meanings of the project’s materials, Simpson used III as both an examination of and a meditation on the act of wishing. The set includes a wooden box filled with three contrasting wishbones, or “wishes,” made from bronze, ceramic, and rubber. The bronze and rubber wishbones are unbreakably rigid. The ceramic wishbone was designed expressly for its fragility.
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