The trompe l’oeil effect and multi-layered pastel images of Nancy Staub Laughlin draw the viewer in to uncover hidden mysteries and meanings. Please visit her website to see more of her artwork.
I have created a new concept of the still life which I refer to as my “simulated stills.” I create these stills by first gathering specifically chosen “props.” I methodically place them to achieve the effect I am after for that particular setup.
The “props” can be gems, reflective objects, glowing lights, and photographed landscapes. Every object or landscape is placed with purpose to accentuate or mimic each other. The landscapes serve as a natural counter balance or juxtaposition to the glitter, sequins, and sparkle.
I photograph the moment and use the chosen photograph to work with to create the pastel drawing. Sometimes the photograph itself is rephotographed after adding additional material as I see fit. In my previous series, I worked from the photograph that captured the “stills” to produce the pastel drawing. They had the illusion of the trompe l’oeil effect using intense shadows.
In my current series, the photograph is physically being added to the pastel on paper one half inch from the surface, creating a trompe l’oeil effect. They might be described as assemblages. The photograph is simplified in these new ones; concentrating on magnifying a detail, i.e. glitter or rain on the windshield.
The shadows play an important role, adding dimension and providing the opportunity for the viewer to “enter” my world from a different perspective. This concept opens another door to the “next step” in my progression. I draw the things I love the most. The fun comes from combining all the elements – enveloping the viewer and unveiling my unique world. Welcome to my world . . .
I earned a BFA from Moore College of Art, Philadelphia and have stayed creative ever since with numerous accolades and exhibits. I have had the honor of having Sam Hunter, Art Critic and Historian of Modern and Contemporary Art, review my work. He used the words “refreshingly unique,” which could not be a better compliment.
I also attended the Johnson Atelier Institute of Technical Sculpture in Princeton, New Jersey. I have exhibited in Noho Gallery, NYC, Bristol-Myers/ Squibb, New Jersey State Museum, State House of New Jersey, Johnson and Johnson World Headquarters, and Prudential.
My work was also honorably included in the select show Six New Jersey Masters at Kean University, Burger Gallery. I most recently exhibited at the Noyes Museum where I was also a guest lecturer. My work has received critical acclaim and reviews from the New York Times, City Arts, Gallery/Studio Magazine, and a featured artist review by Renee Phillips, Manhattan Arts.
I have had a number of features in the Star Ledger, Trenton Times and numerous online sites. I am represented in many private and public collections and was honored to be chosen to be in the NAWA collection at the Jane Voorhees Zimmerli Museum, Rutgers University.
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