ABOUT CHERYL HARPER
Trained as both an Art Historian-Curator as well as a Printmaker-mixed media artist, she misses one when not doing the other. In the last few years she found a balance that enables her to follow both paths. Her work continues to be informed by her curiosity about other artists as well as the world around her. One body of work might be inspired by illuminated manuscripts, yet another by prehistoric symbols, or current events.
Her social commentary can be biting and beautiful simultaneously. One series, “Convenient Vanities”, was inspired by the love of junk food, so conveniently available at the corner store, the drug store, supermarket, and drive through. It’s delicious, yet it shortens our lives, She was looking at 16-17th vanitas paintings, filtering them through her contemporary experience, thus Convenient Vanities. These works combine several approaches to art making, including prints, woodworking, ceramics, quilting, and more.
Harper is particularly interested in the American Presidency, documenting it through a humorous lens since 2004. Regarding Harper’s political body of work, she states, “As in many preceding cultures to our own, the public demands its leaders be icons, stepping into necessary roles acceptable to the masses. My inspiration comes from combining the reputations of these personages with art historical references that seem obvious to me. I document my observations of popular media, and draw from my experiences as a voter with occasional spurts of political activism.”