Friday, May 16, 2008

Etsy Find of the Day: Cathy Nichols

The image above, called Spun, caught my eye several months ago. I stuck it in my Etsy cart, as I often do when something grabs my attention, and went along my merry way. But the image stayed with me. I don't know what it is about it, exactly, but I keep coming back to consider it.

Perhaps it's the sense that it can be read more than one way -- as sheer, childlike delight at the dizzying, exhilarating sensation that you're floating on air after a gravity-defying carnival ride. Or maybe it's the slightly unnerving suggestion that something has gone awry here. Or perhaps there's a third interpretation: That this girl has somehow been liberated from gravity and other bothersome worldly constrictions after her thrilling ride on the spinning contraption. (I guess you could call it a Rorschach test of sorts: Do you see unbridled summer-fair glee, disaster, or a break for freedom depicted in the simple image?)

Maybe this is the same girl, being borne into the sky by a cluster of balloons in Aloft. Or maybe not. Or perhaps, as usual, I'm just overanalyzing things. But still, I dig it. I'm pretty keen on the rest of the slightly surreal, candy-colored prints in New York painter Cathy Nichols' Etsy shop, too. Take a look:

Hello Summer 1, 2, and 3

Summer's End 1, 2, and 3

Day Off


4 Songs


Each 7-by-7-inch print (on 8.5-by-11-inch paper) is $28. See all of Nichols' Etsy offerings right here -- and check out more of her work here.


Melody said...

I love Cathy's work too...thanks so much for mentioning her on your blog. I agree it is hard to put your finger on what it is about her art that resonates but it surely does.

Anonymous said...

Thank you, Leah, for your great post about my work. I love what you've written about "Spun." When I showed that piece for the first time, half the people felt that the girl was off on an adventure while the other half felt she was headed for imminent disaster. I supposed it's all in the eye of the beholder!

kelly said...

I love that first image, as well as your commentary on it. Both great!


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