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A large black & white drawing depicting a large party of mid-century New Year's Eve revelers smoking, drinking & chatting in their paper hats and crowns.
The drawing is part of a series based on old family photographs. This particular image was drawn from a very small photo dated 1953 about which the only thing known was from an inscription on the back reading "American Embassy Bucharest." The clothing and hairstyles were from another era, but the faces evoked familiar personalities. As I reconstructed & invented the various figures, stories seemed to emerge around each until the room was filled with diplomats, secretaries, flirtatious spouses, 50's bros and even a spy or two.
Michelle Friars is an artist living on an island in the Salish Sea. Her background as an art historian specializing in medieval and 14th c Italian left her with a love of pictorial narrative and a fascination with tales of mystery and the miraculous. She tries to reflect that sensibility in her art, something she hopes will entice viewers to invent stories of their own. She loves the intensity of works in black & white and sees drawings as an end in themselves not merely a step on the way to painting.
She is an alum of Columbia University and the Kang-O’Higgins Atelier at Gage Academy in Seattle. Her drawings and photographs have appeared in galleries, museums and publications across the US.
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