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Lucy Fradkin
Brooklyn, NY



ARTIST STATEMENT: Replete with references to the ancient frescoes and mosaics of the Etruscans, Romans and Byzantines, my paintings capture a timeless moment through a contemporary eye. For the past twelve years I have concentrated on a series of figurative works painted in oil or gouache on paper and board. Inspired by Indian and Persian miniatures, the vanishing art of hand-painted signage and a variety of sacred and folk arts, I create portraits of diverse individuals. Following in the tradition of genre painters, I place figures, often women, in domestic settings. The figures are quiet and inactive, which contributes to the solemn and mysterious atmosphere of the scene. At times I incorporate collaged decorative elements from a variety of sources including old catalogs, field guides and vintage books into the work. Through meticulous cutting and pasting, I develop intricate designs and motifs which become a subtle aspect of the surface of the work. I push the collage element further in a series of new pieces in which the collaged elements are literally placed into domestic interiors, adding a new dimension to the work. I use color and pattern to evoke emotion and tell stories of daily life where the viewer is drawn into an intimate world. My work is clearly inspired by the traditional, but the impact of personal history is evident in the quiet presentation of issues of gender and race.
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