SIX OF ONE: ELIZABETH WINNEL
Six Quick Questions
With One of My Favorite Artists
In the Field with Lori Zimmer
I met Elizabeth a few years ago at Art Basel Miami. She lived for a brief stint in New York, before deciding to go back to Savannah College of Art and Design for graduate school. Although we only keep in touch on Facebook now, I immediately thought of her work when PMc Magazine was planning its Sex Issue. Using herself as model, her multi-media pieces focus on her identity, sexuality, and emotions–with bold, sexy and drippy strokes, in colors that look good enough to eat. Her latest series of melty lips are both hot and disturbing. The breathy and smudgy browns of an iconic woman’s mouth speaks both lust and gore. Is that lipstick? Or blood turned brown from air exposure?
1. What are you currently obsessed with?
Currently I am preoccupied with colors, color palettes and color mixing I find myself gravitating to work that exploits or relies heavily on the artist’s sense and use of color. Also, I can’t stop thinking about Paul McCarthy’s work. The grotesque and visceral qualities are overwhelming; I wish I could harness even just a fraction of that in my work.
2. Describe your work in three words.
Empathetic, voyeuristic, erotic.
3. What are your favorite recent exhibitions?
Favorite recent exhibitions: Michael Scoggin: “Family Values” @ Saltworks (Feb 2011).
John Currin: “New Paintings” @ Gagosian (Dec 2010).
Francis Bacon: “Centenary Retrospective” @ The Met (2009).
Lisa Yuskavage @ David Zwirner (2009).
4. What is your favorite place and why?
Savannah, Georgia, where I’m currently living, is my favorite place to be right now. I have great peers and friends, who are helpful, supportive and critical. They push me to work hard and challenge myself, and my ideas. As well, the city itself is fairly low key. I can concentrate on my work without too many distractions. It is also very beautiful, warm and has a lot of charm.
5. What is your go to karaoke song?
Well if I was ever to sing a karaoke song, which I have never done before, I would probably pick some Fleetwood Mac. Maybe.
6. What book has most influenced you?
To pick one would be unfair to the many things that influence what I think and do. Right now, I find myself thinking a lot about the book Art in Theory 1900-2000. It is a collection of many great essays and articles. As for fiction though, I would probably say The Alchemist. And one final book would definitely be Food Revolution by John Robbins. It turned my world upside down.
Elizabeth Winnel is a Canadian artist, currently based in Savannah, Georgia.
Written by Lori Zimmer
Photography Courtesy of Elizabeth Winnel
Design by Devon Pentz
Artwork & Photography Courtesy of Elizabeth Winnel