Description

Over the years, Janet Werner has accumulated a stockpile of images from magazines and books that serve as source material in constructing her characters. True to the interpretive function of portrait art, she focuses on capturing and shaping the individuality of the human figure. It is all a matter of how things are presented: facial appearance, expression, gaze, pose, proportions and dress imply choices and are indications of personality. Most of Werner’s paintings are of women, subjectively observed and depicted with special attention to the standards of beauty that they embody. Genie presents a misshapen figure whose disproportionate body parts mock a certain feminine ideal. The face is too small, the eyes too close together and the naked back too long for the rest of the body. The raw, direct treatment emphasizes the exaggerated features and creates a distorted morphology that critiques the aesthetic norms promoted by fashion magazines. J. B.

Historical Vignette