Libby Black

Heather Marx Gallery

A cooked lobster, a tin of caviar, a golden Louis Vuitton champagne bucket containing a bottle of Cristal, and a Chanel picnic basket with a baguette protruding from it are spread on a Burberry blanket in a feast of name-brand luxury. All that’s missing is the diner, who has kicked off her magenta Prada high heels and quit the scene. One clue to her mode of departure might be the nearby boat emblazoned with a cheerful floral motif more often applied to pricey handbags and fitted with a life preserver bearing the iconic LV monogram. The tableau, Picnic Set, 2005, was constructed by Libby Black, who made each life-size object by hand from paper, hot glue, and acrylic, and arranged them like props in a low-budget set for a high-society farce, a murder mystery, or an updated dramatization of Manet’s Déjeuner sur l’herbe.

Black has worked in this manner before, exhibiting a faux boutique at

to keep reading

Artforum print subscribers have full access to this article. If you are a subscriber, sign in below.

Not registered for Register here.

SUBSCRIBE NOW for only $50 a year—65% off the newsstand price—and get the print magazine plus full online access to this issue and our archive.*

Order the PRINT EDITION of the November 2005 issue for $17 or the ONLINE EDITION for $5.99.

* This rate applies to U.S. domestic subscriptions.