Elephant Room Gallery is excited to present Chicago-based artist, Fantasía Ariel’s 2nd solo exhibition entitled, “Plucked”. The exhibition opens on Friday, May 20th with a public reception from 6 to 9pm and will be on view through June 18th. The gallery is located at 704 S Wabash Avenue in the South Loop Neighborhood of Chicago.
“Plucked” is a reference to flowers. Fantasía found a parallel between flowers and the portrayal of women, especially in film. The leading lady typically fills a void for the main character, who is usually male. She “is not like other women” and “brightens up the room”. They are like a bouquet of vibrancy in a bland room. The artist wanted to take the idea of these women, plucked from life and inserted into someone else’s discovery of themselves, and explore the women in her own life on a deeper level. What is their life about? What are their struggles? Where do they come from and where do they dream of going?
This exhibition is an intimate collection of painted portraits of women by the artist and many of them, photographed by the artist as well. These personal sessions were an integral part of the process for this work. Fantasía asked them questions, listened to their stories, and worked to understand their ambitions and fears. With that knowledge, the artist was able to capture their character in a moment through facial expression and body language; presenting them as the main character of their own story and not just as an accompaniment or decoration. The artist’s ability to paint her subjects in a realistic manner, while incorporating vibrant colors and simpler backgrounds, pulls her subjects almost off the canvas and into the room with us. “Plucked” reminds us that we all are truly unique and our experiences, whether painful or pleasurable, shape our character and add beauty to our existence.
About the Artist
Fantasía Ariel is a Chicago native artist. She especially enjoys portraying women through her drawings and paintings. With a background in photography and creative writing, she’s currently exploring different ways to tell stories. She wants to showcase the delicate nature and importance of storytelling through imagery. Fantasía has recently been leaning back into her practice of photography to aid her paintings.