london

View of “Sarah Lucas,” 2012.

Sarah Lucas

Situation

View of “Sarah Lucas,” 2012.

There’s the briefest phase during early puberty when one’s hapless ignorance of firsthand sex is combined with an obsessive curiosity for all its obscene details, weirdly accompanied by a childish revulsion toward the whole stinking business. This is that awkward age when the frankest of questions (“What is cunnilingus?”) find their way to the dinner table, followed by the inevitable “Do you guys do it?” and the equally inevitable squeals of horror if even the most liberal of parents attempt a response. Terror and hilarity mix in fine proportion, fueling more queries, fits of laughter, and tactless curiosity, and quickly veering toward real knowledge thanks to the energies of some forgettable local teenager.

Sarah Lucas’s sculptures—all cracks and bulges, surrogate cunts, nipples, tits, and dicks—seem to exist forever suspended in that fleeting preteen moment of wide-eyed

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