"Happy" - Suck it up Buttercup series
8.5"X11" vintage collage with pressed flower
Series featured by Arts to Hearts Project & Quest Art Gallery.
“Suck it up Buttercup” is a feminist collage series that speaks to the power of women’s clothes as an expression of privilege, freedom and self-reflection. Starting from images collected from a “Style Weekly” Magazine published in Toronto Canada in 1939, I cut and pasted together these simple analogue collages on a stark white background, then added dried buttercup flowers arranged around the figures. In this magazine, “western” women are presented as objectified beauties with perfectly curated outfits while other are shown hidden behind their clothes or void of idealized beauty standards of the time. These collages become a conversation about how we view style as a portrait of our nationalism as well as linked to our identity. Through what they wear, the figures tell very different stories, strengthening stereotypes and offer a glimpse into a particular time and place. Interestingly enough, that same year the magazine was published, a universal war was declared.
In my work, I often start with found objects and vintage artefacts, then transforming them to create a contemporary conversation about feminine discourse. Whether working with reflective materials in large-scale public art projects, found readymades in sculptural installations or capturing the essence and complexities of womanhood in portraiture and collage, my work is layered with meaning, history and textures. In my art, I enjoy storytelling about place, memory and linking that to my own personal journey.
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