Olympia in 2019
Watercolour and Ink on Arches Paper
Olympia in 2019 is Olympia in 2018 (see below) given a second attempt.
This piece was created for a watercolour project in which we were to take a historical art piece and put it into a contemporary context/recreate it with a contemporary twist. When I first became aware of the assignment theme, I immediately knew that this assignment was my chance to remake my Olympia in 2018 painting, a painting I had made almost exactly a year before. Olympia in 2018, while sparking an incredible conversation during critique, did not do well in terms of grading. Looking back I absolutely agree on how it was graded. I could have done so many different things that for some reason I just did not do. So I kept my instructor's critique comments until I would be able to remake this piece properly. And I think I did, with a proper substrate, her full body in the frame and an addition of flowers from Manet’s original piece in the background. I’m very happy with how illustrative this piece looks, and the lush, bright and happy colours! I’m glad I gave this concept a second chance, to redeem both her and myself (skill-wise and academically!).
This piece is based on Edouard Manet’s “Olympia” (as well as Olympia in 2018, see the comparison of the two pieces below) and is a comment on the male gaze and sexual desire, and how men used to objectify women in historical artwork. Olympia in 2018 is a part of my Modernized History painting series, which is going to be recreated as watercolour illustrations in 2019-2020.