Drawing reveals the interior motives of the artist. It shows the breadth of technique and also the emotion in every pencil stroke. At times, it is even employed as a form of therapeutic expression. On May 3, 2012 the artist, Courtney Love, had over 45 works featured at Fred Torres Collaborations, and it debuts her foray into the art world. Yes, the famed musician and actress bared a lot in her first exhibition “And She’s Not Even Pretty”.
Arte Fuse came to the opening reception and was told early on that the infamous Courtney Love won’t be able to attend that night. One can speculate the reasons and roll their eyes but at the end of the day, it’s what’s up on the wall that matters. I had to be considerate to look past Courtney Love’s celebrity persona and view her work as that of a person creating her art.
Raw and Emotional. These are two words that immediately come up when you gaze upon her drawings. They have female figures in them that are either self-portraits or a representation of a character. Done mainly in colored pencils, markers, pastels, and watercolors that each piece is a stark depiction of a woman’s innate desire to love and be loved. Mixed in with her drawings are written texts, lines of poetry and thought provoking musical lyrics. There are also white tattered dresses as installations with red markings or embroidered messages that defile the virginal symbolism of the said garment. Love is stark and effusive in her narrative. The females as central figures in her renderings morph from defiant, anguished, emboldened, tattered, formidable and totally damaged. Love does not take the middle road at all. Instead, she goes for the jugular and slashes at the artery to burst forth the emotion of the drawing as brutally honest.
Perhaps this is the real opportunity to see her work and come away understanding more of her as a person and not the notorious celebrity pictured in your head. It is absolutely difficult for Love to shake off the publicly famous persona that follows her like a shadow. However, in the stark and naked artworks that she has presented in this exhibition that you’re able to take a peek behind the tattered but beautiful curtain and see her for being the girl who yearns to love and be loved. Even when she’s not feeling that pretty, it is quite beautiful when Courtney Love’s soul is laid bare to those who opt to see beyond what they know about her.
Courtney Love: And She’s Not Even Pretty
On View: May 3 – June 15, 2012
Gallery Hours: Monday to Saturday (10 am – 6 pm)
Fred Torres Collaborations. 527 W 29th Street, 3rd Floor. New York, NY 10001
article by: Oscar A. Laluyan