Artwork by Lisa van Noorden
November 6 - January 9, 2008 Opening Reception with Special Artist Appearance: December 4, 6â€”8pm
111 Front Street, Suite 208
Brooklyn, NY 11201
LuckyUnlucky presents an installation of artwork by Dutch artist Lisa van Noorden. The dolls, paintings, and drawings on paper depict the theme of â€˜innocence lost.â€™
The series by Dutch artist Lisa van Noorden depicts child soldiers in a medium accessible to all audiences, from adults to young children. The opposition between the â€œluckyâ€ children and the â€œunluckyâ€ child soldiers showcases the injustices in our world in a lighthearted manner simple enough for a child to understand, yet more thought-provoking than the barrage of negative imagery fed to jaded viewers through the television screen every day.
The dolls evoke both feelings of playful nostalgia and mournful sympathy, as viewers are reminded simultaneously of the innocence of childhood, and its susceptibility to corruption. In 2005, van Noorden traveled to Dubai and became enthralled by two souvenir wall clocks painted with the imagery of child soldiers. From this encounter, van Noorden was inspired to create the LuckyUnlucky project as a reflection on the theme of innocence lost. Just as illustrations of those children were frozen in place, with time racing circles around them, so must real children fighting in conflict zones remain stunted while their peers grow and blossom in adolescence.
By pairing her dolls, lucky and unlucky, van Noorden emphasizes the contrast between the petty
problems of youth and the horror which conscripted child soldiers must face on a daily basis. Her twenty-four dolls from twenty-four countries have their own personal histories, based on the stories of real child soldiers. The dolls hang suspended in wooden boxes, as if they were precious
collectorsâ€™ items. Yet the LuckyUnlucky dolls engage the viewer in a way average toys could not.
Their naive and handmade appearance encourages opposing emotions of comfort and rage, as we are able to play witness to the stories of these children, and even to purchase their stylized representations, without having any control over the fate of subjectsâ€™ lives.