Longtime friend of The Standard, artist Lucy Sparrow lures audiences in with her soft, tactile, colorful felt creations before hitting them hard with her comment on subjects from the demise of the traditional high street to censorship in pornography. From 8 Till Late, her fully felted bodega at The Standard, High Line, to Sparrow Mart, a felt fantasyland at The Standard, Downtown LA overflowing with everyone’s favorite groceries, Sparrow has been recognized as one of the most exciting and original artists on the scene.
Following her felt-buying frenzies at our hotels in the USA, Sparrow is bringing her quirky yet subversive works to The Standard, Bangkok Mahanakhon for Add To Cart, a series of felt artworks inspired by the nostalgia of Bangkok’s delicious street carts. The exhibition is a continuation of our long-lasting relationship with Sparrow, and an ode to The Standard’s culture of celebrating local communities, whether on the streets of New York or the alleyways in Bangkok.
We caught up with the artist ahead of her show on April 5, 2023, at The Parlor, Tease and Relay Lobby (First Floor).
How did you decide to work with felt as your medium?
I first started working with felt as a kid—it was a hobby that turned into a career.
You are known for your felt replicas of everyday items. Is there an item you’ve never made and want to try?
I have always wanted to create a felt working time machine that goes backwards and forwards in time, with different outfits and disguises inside.
From Mr. Frieze for Frieze London 2022, to McHappiness for McDonalds, and The Queen’s Platinum Jubilee Lunch at Buckingham Palace, you had an incredible year of projects. Can you tell us your most memorable moments from each?
Starting with Mr. Frieze, I lost count of the amount of people that wanted a real ice cream. When I created the McHappiness stand, passing customers and art lovers commented on the smell of burgers that was in the air, this of course was all in their minds as there was no pumped smell! I’ll also never forget the time King Charles asked me how I made the salt and vinegar crisps so realistic.
This is your first-ever exhibition in Thailand, how does that feel?
So exciting I always love bringing my felt worlds to new places.
Do you have a favorite Thai food?
Tofu Pad Thai, I’m a lifelong vegetarian.
How did you approach the exhibition’s theme: Bangkok’s Nostalgic Street Carts?
I did extensive research about the carts but I am excited to see them for real on the food market scene in Bangkok.
If you were a snack from this exhibition, what would you be and why?
Pink Iced Gem, solid grounding but with a party atmosphere.
This is your third exhibit with The Standard, how has the relationship evolved?
I am thrilled to be working with the Standard again, they are so supportive of my practice.