By Bonnie Gangelhoff
What do ruby slippers, crimson angels, geisha girls, and Snow White have in common? They all appear in paintings by California artist Lucy Gaylord. The visual vignettes Gaylord creates vary in mood from enchanting to haunting. Some are based on fairy tales, while others stem from tragic historic events.
In trojan horse in penn station, she offers a witty reference to the movie The Wizard of Oz. Gigantic ruby slippers invade the lobby of the landmark New York train station, the sequined shoes sparkling over the heads of commuters in the sepia-toned world below. Gaylord uses the scarlet shoes as symbols of the human condition. “You can wish to be somewhere in real life, but you may not end up where you want to be,” she explains. “We would all like to be able to control our lives with three clicks of our heels. But in reality we don’t know exactly where we are headed all the time.”
Gaylord just as easily deals with provocative historic events in her works. In you stand where you sit, ghostlike imagery makes reference to the Mississippi murder of Emmett Till, a pivotal 1955 event that helped mobilize the civil rights movement. Her images tend to speak for themselves, and Gaylord prefers to let viewers make their own conclusions about her intriguing works. She is represented by Greenwood Chebithes Gallery, Laguna Beach, CA.
Featured in “Artist to Watch” January 2005