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Thirza Smith 
All Together Now

March 9th - April 13th 2024

Force and Euphoria: the entire floor of the gallery ramped to the steepest legal limit, in accordance with building regulations for public spaces.


Doubleback Rocker: a double-backed rocking chair made from two dining chairs, the arms fused to form a cage-like structure.


Sloth (Dreamer): a recreation of Drawing of a Megatherium by George Johann Scharf, 1842. The drawing, which takes its form of 14 distinct panels each measuring approx 800x1200mm from the original, may be altered in its display in accordance with the exhibition space.


Thirza Smith’s solo exhibition at 243 Luz is a meditation on time and the body. Historical time, somatic time, physiological time, our remaining time on earth together.


Force and Euphoria (2024) is a response in part to the French architect Claude Parent (1923-2016), who believed that introducing the oblique into our architecture wherever possible (and he did stretch the limits of possible), would create a sense of embodiment and intrigue that a flat surface does not allow. The work also draws on the communist idea of the distinct art object being akin to an idol to capital, the proposition being that mass acts of public theatre replace them.


Parent’s designs favour the nimble and able and he seems to succumb to the stock utopian trap of assuming a level playing field exists as baseline. As such, Force and Euphoria may function as an attempt to consider these ideas with more nuance, and to also take account of the technologies of control that are disseminated through the subdivisions of the social body to manage how we exist in space and time.


Doubleback Rocker (2024) is ostensibly a chair for two people, but due to a fusing is no longer suitable for any person to sit in. The work is romantic, charged with a pathos reminiscent of Eva Hesse or Felix Gonzalez Torres. There is both absurdity and sentimentality, the joining of two bodies or spirits to form a protective cage, a partnership in which these imagined bodies can wait out the world. It can also be viewed as an allegory for the impossibility, or implicit failings of partnership - in its eagerness to hold two bodies at one time it fails to care for any.


In Sloth (Dreamer) (2024) the fractured and forlorn present is brought into sharp relief through the image of the extinct megatherium. The title of the work is taken from a quote by Giorgio de Chirico - “the writer, the thinker, the dreamer… destined to disappear from the Earth like the ichthyosaur and the mammoth”.


Looking at this long dead creature, rendered life sized, a composite of known and speculated bones, we are reminded that we are not yet dead.


The rearrangement of the panels in relation to the space is a way of disrupting the authority that this massive artwork holds. Crammed into the gallery office, amongst filing cabinets and laptops, it becomes an anti-work symbol of both slowness and of compressed time.


Thirza Smith

Force and Euphoria (2024)

The entire floor of the space ramped to the steepest legal limit in accordance with public building regulation.

Dimensions variable

Thirza Smith

Doubleback Rocker (2024)

Wood and paint

116 x 69 x 110cm


Thirza Smith

Sloth (Dreamer) (2024)

Recreation of ‘Drawing of a Megatherium’, 1842 by George Johann Scharf, compressed in accordance with the space.

Watercolour on paper, 14 panels, each panel approx 120x80cm.

Dimensions variable

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