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5.20.2010

Chimera and Charm: The Art of Lesley Reppeteaux

I am captivated by imagery that tells a story. So I was quite transfixed when I happened upon the work of Lesley Reppeteaux ~ dark and dreamy paintings of fairytale characters with secrets in their solemn eyes.

(Phantom Limb, 2009)

And it's the eyes that are most distinctive and compelling in Reppeteaux's images ~ the exaggerated ovals make her women look sorrowful, as if filled with unbearable knowledge they cannot un-know. Often half-creature and half-woman, her lovelies are frequently trapped in some borderland between freedom and captivity, between innocence and experience.

(Saline, The Saltwater Queen, 2008)

In a recent show at Thinkspace in LA, Reppeteaux hung 22 paintings that told the tragic Greek myth of Persephone and Hades. It's a perfect tale for her sensibilities ~ surrounded by lotus flowers and pomegranate motifs, her pale maiden of the underworld wears pinstriped stockings.

(The Scent of Flowers Filled the Air, 2010)

I found this apt description from her: "My work reads like painted fables filled with strange characters telling sordid stories. I blend the worlds of literature and fantasy to create a peculiar world where pouty-lipped vixens and melancholy beauty resides, striking a balance between the lovely and bizarre, creating paintings with chimera and charm."

(A Hush Fell Over the Meadow, 2008)

Her serpentine lines are Art Nouveau-inspired, her details lyrical in their unfolding of the songs of these forgotten heroines. She is a woman of many talents ~ some of her recent works include glass mosaic frames that become part of the artwork, and she is also an accomplished comic book artist. I am entranced by her vision.

(Nest, 2009)

To my dismay, there does not seem to be a comprehensive gallery of Lesley's work online ~ her own website features only currently available works, and there are a smattering of galleries with small collections.

(The Soothsayers Song, 2007)

Still, you may find her through her website, and her blog, cheerfully sub-headed "the happily out-of-date adventures of Lesley." There is also a good interview with her here, and a lovely video on YouTube that pairs her work with a PJ Harvey song. I will surely be keeping an eye out for more painted fables from her...

6 comments:

Hexotica said...

beautiful artwork. I hadn't heard of her before.

Dr.InSectus said...

As usual you've introduced me to something glorious. Missy, you have immaculate taste!

elsiee said...

her artwork is haunting...

The Stapelia Company said...

Wow. Wow. Wow. I love her work. I am literally in love. Amazing stuff. :)

n. said...

gorgeous work - thank you!

Marcheline said...

Very Tim Burtonesque! (Which is always a good thing.)

Hey - I have a treasure hunt (with prize!) going on, and you might be just the person to solve the mystery. Come see!

- M