Fig -- a
He then returns to his studio and meticulously recreates dollhouse-scale sculptures of the studios, down to the most minute detail: mini pots, brushes, canvases and palettes, little magazines, books and record albums, crumpled rags thrown on the floor, dogs on the sofa, scratches on the walls, paint splotches on the floor, teeny-tiny itsy-bitsy labels on the paint tubes.
Actually, meticulous isn't a strong enough word. Maybe obsessive?
"I don't think about it when I'm doing it but I guess it is obsessive," Fig said in a phone interview. "I should say also that the artists I am attracted to work in a very obsessive manner."
Fig's fascinating creations are the subject of two exhibits in
The New Britain show, which focuses on female artists, features sculptures of the studios of
"Turning the three-dimensional image back to two-dimensional brings the painter side back to me," said Fig. Photos in the Five Points exhibit show his sculpted studios of
Fig considers his studio sculptures a form of portraiture.
"All studios are different. ... The creative process is reflected in how the studio is set up. How does it reflect in the art made in that space?" Fig saild. "It could easily relate to anybody. Where do you work? What does your space say about you? What do you keep around you in your space that inspires you?"
Fig's project began in sort of a goofy way. His sister-in-law was getting married and his wife asked him to make sculptures of the bride inside snow globes to use as engagement party favors. Later, he saw an
"The snow globe was too limiting, the image was too cartoony, too small, only about three inches," he said. " I thought, why limit myself to the snow globe?"
Around the same time he was starting in grad school at the
He started by creating studios of deceased abstract expressionist painters --
And what do the artists think of the depictions of themselves? "The best reaction is usually laughter, in a good way. They find humor in the obsessive quality and the detail," he said. "They can't believe the excess I go to to get all these accurate details, the labels on boxes, the scribbles on the walls."
NEW/NOW: JOE FIG will be at
JOE FIG: INSIDE THE STUDIO will be at
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