Monday, July 6, 2015

Art Story: Camey McGilvray

Camey McGilvray, Les Demoiselles d’ Avignon, Painted Wood Sculpture, 37 x 37 x 3 in
Les Demoiselles d’ Avignon

Picasso has always been my favorite artist. Les Demoiselles d’ Avignon is an homage to him, but it is Picasso my way.

Picasso is noted for projecting both his mood and personality on to his canvasses. When he painted Les Demoiselles, he had just broken up with his mistress and expressed his sadness, anger and his hostility toward women in the painting: The subjects are brothel workers. Some of the figures are unflattering, unfeminine. (In fact, two were originally men, which he only partially converted to women.) Some of the faces are grotesque.

In my rendition, I eliminated the facial features entirely and softened or feminized some of the bodies. What remains is the beauty that attracted me to the piece in the first place: The wonderful symmetry of the placement of the figures and their perfect relationship one to another. The beautiful color and flow of the drapery and the audacious attitude of the women.

I worked on this piece for a good two months. In an attempt to do honor and be true to an artist and piece I held in such high reverence, some parts were done over and over. In producing my own rendition of this work, and becoming intimately involved in its every detail, I came to renew my appreciation and admiration of Picasso’s skill, genius really, in draftsmanship and composition. I also got to spend a good amount of quality time with my favorite artist.
Pablo Picasso, Les Demoiselles d'Avignon, oil on canvas,  96 × 92 in, 1907 [source]
Camey will be discussing her art and process at a TAG Artists' Talk on Saturday, July 11, 3pm.
Do you have any questions for Camey? Leave them below in the comments.

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