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Preserver (For Frida) - lifeguard


Preserver (For Frida) - lifeguard Collage

Adam Collier Noel

United States

Collage, Paper on Wood

Size: 18 W x 24 H x 1 D in

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About The Artwork

This piece is inspired by Frida Kahlo's 'Self Portrait in a Velvet Dress'. The base collage is paper ephemera consisting of bus tickets, receipts, book pages and maps. The life-preserver was created with theater tickets. The piece is skim coated with resin and finished with a matte varnish. Countless artists have been inspired by the work of Frida Kahlo and I am no exception. Her strong use of universal themes of pain, loss, love and desire are wrought with powerful symbolism. Her uncommon style of robust portraits simultaneously reflect passion and vulnerability with a sensitivity uniquely her own. Recently I had the pleasure of viewing a Frida Kahlo exhibition at the NSU Art Museum in South Florida. It was my first time coming face-to-face with her work, and it had a profound effect on me. I have always believed there is a residual energy in all artwork that is left behind by an artist after a piece is completed, and that day at the museum I felt Kahlo’s enduring spirit. After my experience with her work I set out to create a series of pieces inspired by Kahlo’s compelling compositions. I used Kahlo’s paintings as a point of departure and used varying degrees of influence in each of the works. The idea was not to draw a parallel between our lives; I would never attempt to compare myself to such a influential figure or try to correlate my life experience with the incredible physical pain and suffering she endured. Instead I set out to construct a body of work that serves as a conduit for both personal and universal narratives as seen through the lens of masculine archetypes and symbols. I began each piece with a mixed media collage of blue prints, road maps, bus tickets, letters of correspondence and various other items of paper ephemera which invoke the nostalgia of my Midwestern upbringing and the roots of my artistic cultivation. Vintage sales slips, receipts and invoices to serve as a reminder of the importance of paper as a record of human history, and also the fleetingness of a life reduced to ephemeral moments. The inverse silhouettes -symbolizing the 'everyman'- are transferred over the collage simultaneously concealing and revealing themselves throughout the layered compositions. The black squares act as a framework for a void each one containing an image as an embodiment of nature, science, history or the physical form.

Details & Dimensions

Collage:Paper on Wood

Original:One-of-a-kind Artwork

Size:18 W x 24 H x 1 D in

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Delivery Time:Typically 5-7 business days for domestic shipments, 10-14 business days for international shipments.

Throughout his education Adam Collier Noel worked to combine diverse materials and techniques with various photographic processes. ​The subject matter incorporated into the artwork is often appropriated from his extensive collection of one-of-a-kind antique daguerreotypes and mid-century snapshots. Each photograph in his acquisition is chosen because of its ability to simultaneously mirror intimate and universal facets of the human experience. “In a day and age when we are constantly being bombarded with immeasurable amounts of new imagery, I have chosen to create new art forms using vintage photographs that have been forgotten, lost or disregarded. This ambiguous, yet familiar collection of snapshots I have assembled traverses universal cultural themes such as nature, science, history and the physical form. My photography-based mixed media artwork relies heavily on the appropriation of these found images and their relationship to the contemporary world through the lens of popular culture.” Employing a combination of technological and traditional processes in his paper-based creations gives Adam Collier Noel the opportunity to reinterpret the original history of the found image through an enhanced narrative. His inspiration is derived from the meaning inherent in the found images, as well as the materials with which he pairs them. Blue prints, letters of correspondence, receipts, book pages, etc. are often layered with the photographs to reflect the importance of paper as a transcript of human history and a place where ideas are written and discoveries are documented. Building upon the rich history of the image creates a transcendence of time and a revitalization of the past, “Much of my work is about optics, ways of seeing and the grand tradition of photography. By appropriating and repurposing found images I give them a new life and a new narrative. I have often expressed that I may not necessarily be the photographer of these relics, but through my artistic interpretation I feel I am their curator.” Recently, Adam Collier Noel traded representational imagery for bold abstraction in a new series of colorful paintings. Using his familiar grid composition, Noel explores formal compositional elements and color theory applications to achieve a rhythmic balance pleasing to the eye. He explains, “The grid has always been a consistent element throughout my artwork. It is a way of bringing order to chaos and organization to disarray.

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