Thursday, December 9, 2010

Maira Kalman

My rigid heart, Maira Kalman 2005
silk and cotton thread on linen & cotton
49 1/2 x 19 1/2”

I have been a fan of Maira Kalman's work ever since she illustrated the David Byrne / Talking Heads song "Stay Up Late" as a children's book. My interest in her work was re-ignited when Penguin Books sent me a complimentary copy of the illustrated edition of The Elements of Style. I noticed how Kalman's work had mellowed and matured from those angular, 80's ways, and I fell in love with it all over again. Imagine my excitement when, in 2005, she began embroidering.

Kalman's first museum show is currently on exhibit at the Skirball in Los Angeles. I happen to be in L.A., so I didn't want to miss an opportunity to see her work in person -especially her embroideries. The above is my favorite. I wish I could have taken a photo of it, or could find a more detailed version online, because what she has done to depict a net over a woman's face is what I enjoy most about the piece.

Maira Kalman
Various Illuminations (Of a Crazy World)
@ The Skirball Cultural Center
on view until Feb 13, 2011
The Principles of Uncertainty
And the Pursuit of Happiness - New York Times blog
Julie Saul Gallery