Monday, January 12, 2009

Heather Corley is so talented I could just puke

This is a series of details of a piece by St. Louis artist Heather Corley, an image of a fragment of the artist's left hand, and the piece in totoal, photographed by me last week in her studio - in the first of what I hope to make a series of studio visits with local artists (Jon Cournoyer, for one, owes me one).

Though I neglected to record the title of the piece, I do remember it is based upon an actual event, when the artist informed her high school sweetheart that his romantic attachment was no longer welcome nor needed. He seems to have responded from the gut.

This piece embodies many of the elements of Heather's art, which usually incorporates the image of a heart, a theme of romantic disappointment gruesomely construed, consciously simplistic technique (the stick figures), wicked humor (the girl's mean smile and upturned eyebrow), and repetitive labor (the embroidery).

Of course, the frilly, flowery embroidery makes a mockery of the quintessentially homy and matronly craft, given the image that it frames: a boy barfing over his broken heart.

As I was just saying on the Poetry Scores blog, I have invited Heather Corley to contribute to our 2009 Poetry Scores art invitational devoted to Les Murray's poem The Sydney Highrise Variations. No word back on that as yet. When last queried, she had not yet followed the link to read the poem. You know these temperamental artists.

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