STILL LIFE: “SMAKLÖST” BY FIDELI SUNDQVIST

Swedish artist Fideli Sundqvist designed paper cutout to mock the seriousness associated with still lives. He calls this smaklöst, or in English, tasteless. Sundqvist’s foods are tasteless in the gustatory sense, but the title of her work can also be interpreted as a comment on the blandness of an archetypal still life. To support the claim that her paper-cut art trumps the conventional, she presents a realistic fish with a twist of lemon – all paper, of course – atop a rustic wooden table for her still life photograph. Small cuts into the shale-blue paper simulate the scales of the fish, and a section-cut reveals the white sinews running through the fish’s pink flesh. In another scene, an artichoke heart stands next to a clove of garlic, its paper-thin (no pun intended) skin crinkled and peeled. The attention to detail and varied textures of paper create additional depth to Sundqvist’s magic trick. In each of the still lives, little insects such as dragonflies and ladybugs populate the scene and prove the veracity of the visual illusion, as if the critters preferred Sundqvist’s food over the real thing. Sundqvist’s previous culinary venture is captured in “Plaza,” a meal of three courses, though that particular work conveyed a greater sense of fun instead of irony. Hungry yet?

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