Tom Sachs
"Malcolm X Rifle"
Mixed Media, 2003


Sachs lifts images from contemporary popular culture, ranging from McDonald's to the Sanrio cast of animal characters. He calls his work "cultural prosthetics," a stand-in for traditional culture. Sachs manipulates viewers' sense of how they consume commercial imagery and take for granted the corporate world of copyright. At a 1999 exhibit featuring Sachs' handmade guns, art dealer Mary Boone was arrested for providing live ammunition for visitors to take away in barf bags based on Hermès shopping totes. Works such as "Prada Death Camp," a pop-up version of a concentration camp built inside a designer hat box, reflect the artist's beginnings as a display designer at Barney's. His latest project, "Nutsy's," is a race track winding around 1:25-scale foam core models of a ghetto and a modernist sculpture park. See www.tomsachs.org for more information.