Graduate Student Excellence-in-Research Award 2020
Lauren O’Connor-Korb, who graduated with an MFA in 2019, is a lecturer at the University of Georgia. Acknowledging that technology plays a growing role in our intimate relationships and serves as a repository for our most sensitive information, her work explores an evolving tendency to integrate ourselves (willingly and unwillingly) with machines and how this process changes the way we communicate with one another. She integrates robotics, speakers and sensors with other digital technologies, creating sculptures that resemble common, low-tech objects such as hat stands, exit signs and musical instruments. This method allows O’Connor-Korb to question entanglements with the technological “other” within the framework of shared cultural symbols. Borrowing from comedy and stage magic, she creates sculptural test cases that play out anxieties and fears about how technological creations might render humans obsolete. O’Connor-Korb was awarded the International Sculpture Center’s Outstanding Student Achievement in Contemporary Sculpture Award for 2019.