reviews

  • Joan Farrel

    Ariel Gallery

    The subject of Joan Farrell’s paintings and collages is the tacky, glittery surface of everyday life and the desire, fear, and commerce that lie beneath that surface. Speared Heart (all works 1988) demonstrates the opposition of the surface and depth literally: what appears to be a Valentine’s Day candy box becomes, on closer inspection, a heart-shaped funeral piece, with a piercing shaft that is more like a fishtailed worm than Cupid’s arrow. In other pieces, Farrell writes phrases such as “Safe Sex,” “Never Burn Original Mortgage Documents,” and “Fall’s Most Flattering Suits” using glitter or

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