Gun Molls and Rebel Rousers
About these works:
Prostitution has two definitions: the common definition being a woman who sells her body, and the second definition is someone who exploits their talents for something considered unworthy. The images that I am creating now are an experiment in cultural prostitution. I am pushing my cultural and aesthetic sensibilities to indulge in something that I used to try and fight: to create images that are just plain irresistible. Focusing on "low brow" sources such as pulp fiction covers, old pin up artists, burlesque, and cheesecake art, I am giving credit to a part of our lives that may be emotionally shallow, but is deceptively well done and instinctually enticing. Concurrently, on a personal level, this is more of an exploration into my own fascination with the fact that I am drawn to these images regardless of my feminist and pacifist ideals. My recent subjects are often women in history who some might say "sexploited" themselves to move beyond what was socially available to them; in other words, women who teeter on the line between sexual liberty and self-exploitation. The job of these women, be they actresses, exotic dancers, strippers, or porn stars, has generally been to create an escape for their audience. They frequently embellish on a fantasy world that doesn’t exist. One where beauty and elegance reign, and women are emotionally strong and sexually willing. Just as I'm not certain whether these images and cultural icons are more sexist or more liberating, I am not certain if I am further exploiting these women, or acting on a reverse exploitation by portraying them in a way that I consider beautiful. Regardless, Coca Cola girls, Pin Ups, Cheesecake Art, Pulp Fiction, Bond Movies, Romance Novels, and US magazine would not be such a prolific part of our lives if most of us didn't secretly love to indulge in their tantalizing escape every once in a while. So there you have it, I am in the midst of aesthetic indulgence and loving every minute of it.