Cornelia Parker

Cornelia Parker, OBE, has been twining together themes of history, violence, and transcendence since the 1980s, working in mediums that range from sculpture, installation, and works on paper, to photographs composed out of manipulated found objects and images. She has flattened silver tea sets and other objects with a steamroller and hung them from the ceiling; and cast sidewalk cracks in bronze to create evocative, minimalist sculptures. Among her best-known works is Cold Dark Matter: An Exploded View (1991), for which she had the British army blow up a garden shed, whose fragmented pieces she displayed suspended and dramatically lit from within. Her work is “constantly unstable, in flux; leant against a wall, hovering, or so fragile it might collapse,” as Parker describes it. “It is a universal condition, that of vulnerability. We don’t have solid, fixed lives; we’re consistently dealing with what life throws at us.”