ISSY WOOD

Issy Wood is an American-born,

London-based painter and writer.

The work of this artist, who is in her late 20s, will be featured jointly at October’s Dallas Art Fair

by Carlos/ Ishikawa and JTT, her London and New York–based galleries, respectively.

Wood’s work is no exception, as her writings tend to serve as a sounding board for her paintings.

 Her blog, committotthedish, continues a journaling practice that she began as a teen.

At first glance, Wood’s work features beautifully painted ephemera of middle-class life. Slouching towards the maxillofacial unit, for example, presents the aura of a traditional still life.

With the prominently featured plaster cast of a jaw, it carries the same dirgelike quality of memento mori from previous centuries.

This jaw, however, is accentuated by a set of braces that glint like diamonds.

The pallid, lifeless cast is contrasted by luscious,

perfect Concord grapes in the background, still attached to their vibrant leaves.

 From an art historical perspective,

The homage to suburban life continues in Excuse me/your life is waiting. Here, a set of formal china,

complete with every imaginable serving piece,

The feminine dimpled chin and crimson Cupid’s bow lips of the face at the top of the work suggest that all this tableware awaits its central place in a young bride’s new home.

With her face cropped below the eyes, this faceless woman reflects the soulless sameness of midcentury consumer culture.

The image self-consciously represents an antiquated image of hope and the promise of marital bliss embodied in owning a complete set of china.

Since Wood regularly mines auction catalogues for source material, in her hands it seems to represent something else.

Rather than the future, once these objects become heirlooms they often go under the hammer as the result of loss, usually as one of the three d’s of the auction trade: death, divorce, or debt.

Similarly, Car interior/snacking on your faculties, reflects the stereotypical male desire: a sports car, outfitted with plush, blackleather seats.

The jadeite bull in the foreground adds an additional dose of testosterone.

 This larger-than-life work is even painted on black velvet, paying homage to mancaves throughout middle America.

Wood’s work has a subtle refinement to it.

 Study for getting me nostalgic features a young woman whose artistic roots seem to lie in the moody elegance of early 20th-century painters such as Tamara de Lempicka.

There is a timeless grace to the figure deflecting a universe of stars as they begin to swarm her.

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