Box Heart Gallery is proud to present “Splendor and Safety Pins”, a solo show of oil paintings by Arabella Proffer. Having her work labeled everything between Pop Surrealism and Neo-Realism, the common narratives and emotions that run through this portraiture series are ones of romance and rebellion.
Channeling costume history of the Renaissance through the Georgian period, each highly detailed painting is a depiction of old world aristocratic decadence; these mannerist gothic and punk portraits of imaginary nobility explore the roles that beauty, vanity, entitlement and virtue play in shaping aesthetic outcomes. Concerned with identity, first impressions, and the ideas and representations of counter-culture and tradition, each piece explores how piercing, tattoos, and punk rock style might have been adopted by aristocrats and social elites if part of their own decoration for serious portraits to be left as a reminder of their legacy.
While each portrait is a product of imagination — most depicted as ambitious women in pursuit of perfection, and the doomed men who adore them — the original biographies created by Arabella lend a surreal authenticity. Besides costume research and creating biographies, as part of the process Arabella also creates a family tree and homeland map for each portrait, connecting the dots as to how each portrait has a relation to each other.
Opening Reception: Saturday, September 19, 6:00pm – 9:00pm
@ Box Heart Gallery 4523 Liberty Avenue, Pittsburgh, PA
on view September 15 – Oct. 10th
See more at: www.arabellaproffer.com