Eric Kent Wine Cellars
The Art Tour

Libby Black

Libby Black


2010 Stiling Vineyard Pinot Noir

Through painting, drawing, and sculpture my work uses the iconography of the fashion world and luxury brands to investigate the mechanics of desire, access and privilege, while also exploring themes of imperfection, vulnerability and ambivalence. 

My paintings and drawings are based on fashion advertisements and magazine spreads. I am drawn to source imagery that might have an ambiguous meaning — something beyond the intended message to sell a product or feature a trend. In many of the images, the product is absent — what is there is just a hint at a story or a mood. While the fantasy may be recognizable, the choice of imagery and the way in which I render that imagery is an attempt to read the image’s narrative against the grain. What makes this subject matter interesting to me is that I feel both drawn in by the fantasy and also critical of it.

In addition to painting and drawing, I also create three-dimensional life-size versions of sometimes real, sometimes imagined luxury goods out of paper, hot glue and paint. These objects might be a Burberry skateboard, Hermes roller skates, or a stack of designer luggage. I have also created entire installations of sculptural works, such as a Louis Vuitton boutique in a storefront gallery and a Kate Spade store within a museum. With the sculptural work, I am interested in how the objects appear from a distance to be real, even if implausible, while upon closer inspection the illusion begins to fall apart.

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