Artist Spends 5 Years Covering Entire Kitchen in Millions of Glass Beads

You might think you know what patience means, but American artist Liza Lou clearly has a bit better understanding about what meticulous work really is. Her first large scale work Kitchen took 5 years to complete (1991–1996), and is, as the title suggests, a life-size replica of a kitchen, covered entirely in millions of glass beads. Liza placed each of tiny beads separately using a pair of tweezers, and that way created an amazing mosaic surface to every single item in the room, from walls to newspaper to a bag of chips.

In 1999, she was back with her new Backyard project, where she used over thirty million beads! Most of them went into creating 250,000 blades of grass around the picnic table. In 2013 Liza presented her last project, called Color Field, which will on display at the Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego through November 3rd. Color Field is meant as a tribute to the grasslands of South Africa, where Liza is currently based.

The artist says that her work was inspired by traditional African bead crafts, which are still very much alive in the local culture. She cooperated with local artisans, who passed her the secrets of this medium that they have been working with for generations. Check out the mesmerizing results!


Kitchen took 5 years to complete. Liza placed each of tiny beads separately using a pair of tweezers.



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10 responses to “Artist Spends 5 Years Covering Entire Kitchen in Millions of Glass Beads”

  1. There’s a fine line between amazing and bat shit crazy.

  2. Polishnurse Avatar

    That is a lot of patience. I can not even imagine trying to move the display. With all those beads it must be quite heavy. I agree the way to appreciate the bead work is the correct lighting.

  3. Diego Keretzky Crusius Avatar
    Diego Keretzky Crusius

    had a van gogh impression

  4. Mike Skrzynski Avatar
    Mike Skrzynski

    How does one live a daily life and pay bills if one is placing glass beads down every day? Is there a grant really this generous, because I want to find that grant.

  5. Stephanie W Avatar
    Stephanie W

    Her exhibits she require viewers to carry tiny flashlights and mirrors to interact with all of this!

    1. Stephanie W Avatar
      Stephanie W

      *her exhibits should require…. I meant to say

  6. Simply amazing!

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