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Pain Diva

Robert Sievert



Frances Siegel is a painter and print maker who has been at work for many years. Recently I came across a paper sculpture of hers in a show at the Prince Street Gallery. It was quite touching and I asked for some information. Here is her response:

A while back while I was recovering from a wrist fracture with a nasty "external fixator" attached to my bones to hold everything together. It felt like a torture machine and the fact that it looked like one too probably added to the upset come to think of it -- even strangers on the street were horrified... So for the six weeks of my duress art came to my rescue and I exploited my state of affairs to the hilt. Did everything I could think of to draw, paint and write about my tsuris and since the injury was to my left wrist and I'm a righty I was still pretty fluent. Was drinking lots of tea at the time, from whence the teabag body was born and the sculptural wonders of ordinary paper moistened in the stuff, crumpled and left to dry formed the arms, legs, facial expression, etc.

A few months later I loaned her to a friend as a talisman for a hard time she too was going through and the friend referred to her as the "diva" of her apartment...

After she had performed her therapeutic tasks for my friend she returned to me and I gave her a little book, which though made in her absence, fit her to-a-tea (so to speak!) Attached to her waist it looks to me now like a sort of guestbook or dance-card... who knows maybe she'll invite people to sign it the next time she "comes out"..

Well to me this is really functional art. Somehow this not only is extremely satisfying to look at but as well served the artist an useful tool to get through a difficult time. Also it has a wonderfully fresh creative spirit in it.... not easy to find these days.


  Copyright © 2007 Robert Sievert




March 17, 2007