Lilly McElroy Controls the Sun and Other Selfless Acts

September 2, 2016 - November 5, 2016
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About

Lilly McElroy Controls the Sun and Other Selfless Acts


The Figge’s Figgeo Contemporary Video Art Series returns this September with Lilly McElroy Controls the Sun and Other Selfless Acts, a multimedia installation featuring video and photographic works by artist Lilly McElroy. A native of southern Arizona, McElroy translates the clichéd experiences of her youth—bull-riding cowboys, coyotes howling on moonlit nights, beautiful Southwestern sunsets and vicious barroom brawls—into epic photographs and playful, antagonistic videos.

Reflecting her complex relationship with the landscape of her youth, McElroy’s work explores what it means to be an American in a time of diminished expectations. She performs for the camera, enacting gesturesthat convey a sense of quixotic hopefulness as well as a desire for control over subjects as ungovernable as nature.

In her work, McElroy attempts to develop authentic ties with her past experiences, to give old clichés new and personal meaning. Her photographs and videos acknowledge the possibility of failure; that she may go unnoticed and be unable to affect any change on the world around her. However, it is this possibility that keeps things interesting. As she performs, the artist becomes a sympathetic hero and a stand-in for the viewer as she confronts the sublime landscape and, attempting to take ownership of the
cliché, calls its power into question.

On view September 3-November 6, 2016

Companion Event:
Thursday, September 22nd at 7 pm
Artist Talk: Lilly McElroy “Playful/Violent Gestures”

Lilly McElroy, I Control the Sun #10, 2015, archival pigment print, courtesy of the artist.

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