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Virtual Fantasy curated by Melissa Wolf

Introduction to Catalogue

“Virtual Fantasy” By Mark Blickley


I did not hesitate to accept Melissa Wolf’s offer to jury this show…. When she told me the title of this exhibit, “Virtual Fantasy,” I clearly understood what virtual meant. I wasn’t so clear about what constitutes fantasy, so I researched the word until I uncovered a conceit that felt comfortable. According to aphorist Mason Cooley, “Fantasy mirrors desire. Imagination reshapes it.”….The diversity of the work, in both form and content, excited me. When viewing a group show I appreciate the eclectic and enjoyed the humor as well as the seriousness of the selected artists.  While some of the pieces in this show are narrative and some are conceptual, all exude an aggressive shove, a seductive invitation, or a treacherous undertow that pulls one into the artist’s imaginative inner world of desire.

The following paragraphs are the fantasies that each of the artists in this show invoked within me:

….Helle Rask Crawford’s sculpture, “Beetle Surfer,” depicts a frightening  joyride atop a sacred scarab (beetle).  The Latin word for beetle is coleoptera and the child who stands atop of it certainly looks as if he could have been bronze casted during Cleopatra’s reign.  A beetle’s exoskeleton is made up of plates and many beetle species prey on mammals. This young surfer, who is deluded with the notion that he is in control, is fittingly poised upon a bronze plate ignorantly pointing to his final destination as a scarab’s supper. Humankind always deludes itself that they can control insect pestilence;  beetles make up nearly fifty percent of all insects…..

And what fantasies do you see?