Danh Vō, ‘We The People (detail)’, 2011-2014, Public Art Fund

Image rights: Collection François Odermatt, Montreal. Photo: James Ewing, courtesy Public Art Fund

About Danh Vō

Danh Vō’s conceptual works explore themes of appropriation and fragmentation, incorporating his experience as a Vietnamese-born Danish citizen and consistently using his own life as material. In a commentary on the practice of changing and rearranging immigrants’ names on arrival in their new home countries, Võ married and divorced several people in rapid succession in order to add their surnames to his own. He titled the work Vo Rosasco Rasmussen (2002-) after two of his spouses. Vō’s We the People (2011) is a scrupulous replica of fragments of the Statue of Liberty for which the artist took pains to ensure the same copper hammering technique. The resulting hollow pieces were exhibited spread out on the floor of a gallery space, highlighting the unexpected fragility of the original statue, visible in the thinness of its material. Vō won the Hugo Boss Prize in 2012.

Vietnamese and Danish, b. 1975, Ba Ria, Vietnam, based in Berlin, Germany