While usually beads appear on jewelry, visual artist Liza Lou uses the tiny colorful objects to cover large surfaces in her installations and sculptural works. Currently based in South Africa, where she founded a studio collective in 2005, the New York-born artist now works with local Zulu artisans who have an expertise in beadwork.

Although her medium is tiny, her final projects feature life-sized replicas of everyday places and objects. Lou first gained recognition in 1996 for a piece titled Kitchen and Backyard, which took five years to complete. With extreme detail and intricate patterns, the artist creates works that seem like a series of paintings brought to life.

Liza Lou's latest project, Color Field, which conveys the grasslands of South Africa, will be on display through November 3, 2913 at the Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego.

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[via Designboom]