(For more information about the “Viewfinder Project” click here.)
Lauren Schiller’s “View Finder” depicts a stereoscope and a stereoscopic card. Schiller’s work often presents food in a way that creates a sense of longing along with a sense of mild guilt. It is not that sweets like cupcakes or cookies are that bad, it is more that they present temptation. However, it seems that the better a person is (e.g. kinder, more studious, careful, generous, etc.) the more smaller temptations can take on a greater significance. For this reason Schiller’s style lends itself to this perspective. Her pencil drawings and prints are rendered in the most precise manner placing the artist in a perfectionistic category. This also makes the drawings and prints richly ironic since they often deal with such seemingly superficial yet psychologically charged flaws (e.g. enjoying sugar).
Promiscuous Experience of Sweetness, Graphite Drawing by Lauren Schiller (Size: 4 1/4″ x 6″)
In the drawing Schiller sent me (seen above), the viewer’s relationship to the couple and cake depicted is explicitly voyeuristic. The viewer is twice removed from the activity. Through the stereoscope the cake and the couple exist as nostalgia for a time when the cake and the gaze of the lovers were pure sweetness. We can only imagine what happens after the couple turn from each other toward the cake. It does not seem like the image would become sweeter if the cake were being devoured.
Detail: Promiscuous Experience of Sweetness, by Lauren Schiller
Below is an etching Lauren schiller made for a 2005 portfolio of prints titled “Guilty Not Guilty”. For more images and information visit Lauren Schiller’s website.
Etching by Lauren Schiller