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The theme of my latest work is “The Artists’ Muse.” My work began by researching many artists—from different periods and countries—and searching for the models or muses who inspired specific artworks. I wanted to have a broad historical range, to provide an overview of the differing and convergent relationships between artists and their muses. I made Rembrandt’s wife Saskia my historical starting point, and ended with Picasso’s muse Dora Maar.

In my artwork, I want to create the illusion that the muse has just left the artist’s studio, or has just stepped out of the artwork. The painting that inspired each piece is mounted and framed, standing behind the artwork. The fifteen-inch figure—with clothing and various accessories—has been recreated in paper, with every possible detail. With this group it was necessary for me to explore new ways of replicating costumes in paper. It was a challenge, but one of the most enjoyable parts of the process. I also added other accessories that were present in the painting, or in the setting in which it was painted. I took some liberties with artists like Picasso and Modigliani, using my own little visual cues. I made great efforts to create a sense of connection between the original painting—with its distinct historical context—and my own work. Each piece is accompanied by a written biography of the muse and her relationship with the artist.

It’s my goal to give a voice to an overlooked component of famous paintings, and through my artwork, illuminate some of history’s forgotten subjects. I hope that the viewer is not only moved by the intricacies of detail that I put into my work, but will learn something about the women who inspired, nurtured, and loved the artists who created some of the most beautiful paintings every made.

Click to View Muse Descriptions: Pablo Picasso’s Muse – Dora Maar, Manet’s Muse – Victorine Meurent, Marc Chagall’s Muse – Bella Rosenfeld, Rembrandt’s Muse and Wife – Saskia van Uylenburgh, Aline Masson Muse – Raimundo de Madrazo, Elizabeth “Lizzie” Siddal Muse – Dante Gabriel Rossetti

Elizabeth Lyska

Patty’s most recent show draws from the life and cultural setting of giantess, Elizabeth Lyska, who became famous in the late 1880s. Born in a small and impoverished Russian village, Elizabeth started growing rapidly at the age of 4, and by the time she turned 11, was well over 7 feet tall. After the death of her parents, her uncle became her promoter and arranged tours for her throughout all of Europe. Wherever Elizabeth traveled, she became the center of attention—to scientists, suitors, and pedestrians—for she was not only famous for her size, but was also considered very beautiful.

Made completely out of paper, Elizabeth stands in the gallery at her actual height of 7’2”. Surrounding her are the many relics, toys, and keepsakes that she accumulated over her life: a ring and key that were given to her by an Austrian baron, a bouquet of roses that were named after her, a locket containing a picture of her parents. Each piece is accompanied by a
narration—fabricated by stray facts from newspapers, books, letters, and diaries, and written by her son, Tynan Kogane.  With the fragile beauty and reference that only paper can properly evoke, this show recreates the splendor and aesthetic themes of an era, following Walter Benjamin’s approach, that “memory is not an instrument for surveying the past but its theatre.”

 

New York Criminals 1880-1915

This group of art is generated from the stories of real people who committed crimes, as reported in the New York Times between 1885-1915. Each rogue is captured entirely in paper and stands 12-14 inches. They are sold accompanied with a copy of the original article.


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