Hannah Levy

Untitled, 2015
Cast plastic Venus Embrace razor holders, silicone
Dimensions variable (75 m silicone chain)

Untitled, 2016
Steel, thermoplastic, silicone, plastic tub
63.50 x 111.80 x 91.40 cm

Untitled, 2016
Steel, epoxy clay, acrylic, silicone, plastic tub
63.50 x 111.80 x 91.44 cm

Untitled, 2016
Nickel plated steel, silicone, hand carved alabaster
182.90 x 63.50 x 81.30 cm

Courtesy the artist and Galerie Parisa Kind

Hannah Levy’s sculptures combine solid and synthetic materials with organic forms that evoke physicality and eroticism. Levy creates sculptures with an inherent dichotomy. She combines objects made of skin-colored silicone with highly polished metal structures, creating a strong contrast between industrial-looking structures and unidentifiable anatomical fragments.

Levy’s objects stun with their perfect execution, which neutralizes any gesture of handcraft. Metal structures with smooth, polished surfaces are carriers of biomorphic-looking objects made of rubber, latex, vinyl and polyethylene. Consistency, colour and proportion evoke organic material, fragments that could come from a living body. However, the fetish-like structures deliberately leave their origin open and refuse to be assigned to a specific category. The soft and elastic forms fit into and wrap themselves around the metal frames, yet simultaneously seem placed by chance. They are reminiscent of material relics, of preparations that could have originated in the abstraction of the laboratory and tissue engineering. Living cells or tissue samples that were taken from a body or grown in a culture medium and implanted into a structural edifice. Artificially generated biological tissue made to produce skin, or whole organs to replace defective parts in bodies.

Levy worked with quotes from the world of commodities. She replicated objects from the cosmetics industry and combined them with bodily elements. Untitled (2015) consisted of a 75-meter-long silicone chain reminiscent of an umbilical cord. Levy extended the original form so it became an infinite strand of bodily remnant spanning the exhibition space. The cord was held up by plastic moulded wall mounts that replicated the shapes of Venus Embrace razor mounts.

Despite many references, the body is never present as a whole in Levy’s work. It is the referent for which the flesh exists, and for whose optimization the utensils and synthetically produced fragments serve. Levy is interested in forms which, once removed from their actual context, negate a function. Levy creatively reclassifies them as autonomous arrangements. The sculptures stand gracefully and fragile in the room. Re-contextualized, Levy shifts the original object out of immediate recognition, but its essence remains as an irritation within the cool and elegantly designed new bodies.


Hannah Levy (*1991, New York City, US) lives and works in New York City (US). Levy studied at the Hochschule für Bildende Künste – Städelschule, Frankfurt (DE), from which she graduated in 2015 as master-class student of Prof. Peter Fischli. In 2013, she received her Bachelor of Fine Arts at Cornell University, New York (US). She received the DAAD Study Scholarship for Fine Arts and the Cornell Council for the Arts Grant. In 2012, she was awarded the Distinguished Achievement Award by Cornell University. The artist participated in international group exhibitions in institutions such as Fondazione Coppola, Vicenza (IT), G2 Kunsthalle, Leipzig (NL), Yuz Museum, Shanghai (CN), Louisiana Museum of Modern Art, Humlebæk (DK) and Palais de Tokyo, Paris (FR).

The artist had solo exhibitions in the following institutions (selection):
Casey Kaplan, New York City (US), Jeffrey Stark, New York City (US), Mother’s Tankstation, Dublin (IE), CLEARING, Brooklyn (US), Galerie Parisa Kind, Frankfurt am Main (DE), White Flag Projects Library, St. Louis (US)