I & R16 Myths & Facts13 Video10 Crisis10 Fayen d'Evie10 Text9 Reproductions9 Improvements8 Sound7 Points of Connection6 Performing the Archive6 Photography6 Listening6 Sculpture6 Memory6 Environment6 Installation5 Painting5 Archives4 Language4 Poetry3 Artist Walks3 Pandemic3 Labour3 Record3 Precarity2 Community2 music2 WS × Social Studio2 Textile2 Performance2 Gentrification2 Translation1 Description1 choreography1 spoken word1 movement1 Sex1 scores1 Improvisation1 Politics1 interpretation1 interview1 Productivity1
Moral Inventory

Spencer Lai’s work produces associative meaning out of a range of accumulated materials that are worked into assemblages, installations, clothing, and exhibitions. These materials often include found objects or images from pop culture—lifted from thrift stores, online, or the mall. We should consider the usage of “material” widely in looking at Lai’s work, and include their social relations (with other artists, spaces, and so on) as part of what they pull into what they produce, and how they produce it. Lai’s use of various commodities points to how identities are constructed within a consumerist culture, giving away to the observation that subcultural identities can be assembled on Instagram or at the mall. The works are rarely singular or stand-alone objects. Rather, their identities are intentionally constructed from multiple references, works, as well as contributions from other artists. Beyond being autonomous, they are predicated on the wider dialogues that constitute the material for Lai’s work.

Moral inventory
Moral inventory
Moral Inventory
Moral Inventory
Moral inventory

Spencer Lai (b. 1991, Malaysia) is a Naarm/Melbourne based artist, curator and writer. They graduated with a BFA (with Honours) from The Victorian College of the Arts, Melbourne in 2014.

Spencer Lai’s practice navigates the visual lexicon of design, fashion, and window display, with specific interest in subcultural identities and aesthetic cultures. Their process involves the collation and editing of found/personal materials, objects and clothing to reflect and disseminate narratives surrounding consumer cultural consciousness