Residency 4 – 1st and 2nd mentor meeting
Nancy Roy-Meyer, FAIR, 2015
Jean-Honore Fragonard, The Swing, 1767
I have met with my new mentor, Amanda Curreri in Oakland at her studio twice, once on 2/27 and then 3/20. I brought my beach painting (Pearl), restaurant painting (Belle), and my recently started CA State Fair painting (FAIR) to our first meeting. I brought the two older paintings (Pearl and Belle) because I have been working on them recently, fixing a couple of things in each one. In Pearl, I painted over the eyebrows in all four corners of the painting. I added the pearl necklace and matching rhinestone bracelet. I added fringe to the bottom of the painting to tie into the fringe on my bathing suit. I also made a wood sign titled Pearl from which to hang my painting. In Belle, I have fixed the table-cloth, I didn’t like the corners of the tablecloth so I added green diamond shapes to tie into the pattern on the floor and colors on the chairs. I also added fringe to this painting as well and I am presently making a wood sign for this painting. I now how my two 3’ x5’ paintings (Pearl and Belle) prepared to hang from signs like my larger 5’ x 6’ Bully painting. I am presently working on my 3rd smaller painting, FAIR to add to my thesis show. If possible, for the grad show in Boston come June, I would like to hang all three smaller paintings (Pearl, Belle, and FAIR) and my large Bully painting. All depends on how much space we get for our work.
My first mentor meeting with Amanda involved her getting to know my work. We discussed a variety of topics including, the visual and conceptual expressiveness of my work. We discussed if I should continue to overload my canvas with saturated colors, glitter, and embellishments or if I should use these qualities more sparingly by providing rests areas for the eye. Not only do I have excessive visual qualities I also need to be more strategic in the selection of content in my work. As Amanda and I explored the form and content of my work, I realized I maybe trying to accomplish too many things in my painting. I also need to think more about the audience I am trying to reach and what I hope to accomplish. I have been concerned that my paintings reinforce prejudices towards the corpulent by surrounding myself with food and giving too much attention to others and their reactions towards me. We talked about kitsch in my work and Amanda didn’t think this was an important topic to address, as she really didn’t see a need. Amanda sees my paintings like posters advertising travel and leisure activities. Amanda thinks the use of text in my work is a place to access my painting. She said words trump images. Amanda wants me to make my own wood letters for my signs. She suggested I might call my beach scene Venus rather than pearl since I am referencing the birth of Venus. I discussed adding sculptural elements in coordination with my paintings such as adding a real shoe in front of my new painting to mimic the shoe flying off my foot. She liked that idea.
My second mentor meeting we discussed the tone of my FAIR painting. I described my interest in using humor as a self-deprecating mode of expression AND as a tool for social critique but I am not sure if the satirical content is gleaned from my work, because of all the surface treatment and color. I just recently realized that my glitter, rhinestones, and generous color are not excessive (Amanda pointed out that excessive is ‘their’ word instead of mine). I should think of my paintings as large, abundant, and full of exuberance.