China Doll

China Doll, is a living picture (tableaux vivants) created while in residence at the European Ceramic Work Centre in the Netherlands (EKWC) featuring cast bone china and black porcelain sculptural works visually woven with wall vinyl graphics, digitally printed fabrics, and still models (aka. candycoated china dolls). These "objects" and the images they create grow out of a continued, almost obsessive, interest in the act of decorating as a sculptural departure point coupled with mystical portrayals of feminine beauty.  When combined, such interest breeds a "beautiful" and seductive alchemical objectification that allures, questions, and conveys. 

 

For this presentation, a live china doll carefully poised as a still mannequin is adorned in a ball gown made of digitally printed piles of guilded bone china skulls- an image created during a previous residency at EKWC in 2005.  As she sits with a platinum bone china flute, she is a contemporary take directly referencing historical European dessert table figurines like the "The Flute Lesson", a miniature still life of young gentleman teaching a lady the fine art of flute playing.

 

China Doll touches on fertile grounds of erotically charged images found in the throughout the history of art. Pulling a from a range of references as early as the Venus de Willendorf to the decorative friezes of Pompeii, from more modern works of surrealist artist Hans Bellmer (circa 1930's) to American fashion photography dating from the 1970's - 1980's.  From these inspired references, intriguing living pictures are arranged for display, photographed as a still life only then to be immortalized as digital fabric.  This approach thus marries the art forms of stage and fashion with those of painting/photography/sculpture providing a form of visual erotic entertainment that is decoratively and uniquely candycoated.