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Eleanor Aldrich

Artist Statement Submitted 2020

I use a grooved trowel to rake paint into cross-contours to give the illusion of bodily form. I work with thick materials that mimic the subject but also serve pictorial conventions, thereby creating tension between the real and the perceived. The images are primarily taken from Nancy Drew book covers—the girl sleuth is posed partially mugging for the viewer, and partially involved in her surroundings. Though she is an active and driving force in the stories; on the cover image she is always a victim or bystander. Like traditional images of girls and women in art she is a subject/object on unfriendly ground. In my work the subject is in quiet rebellion— the illusion of form attracts the viewer but offers an external shell in lieu of flesh, and there is a feeling of excess and an element of risk that hints at barely controlled femininity.

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