Artist's Talk with Cara Phillips

"Singular Beauty" at Suffolk University Art Gallery

Artist's Talk: 1:30 p.m Wednesday, Sept. 16
Reception: 6 - 8:30 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 17,

In her first solo exhibition, Singular Beauty, Cara Phillips presents an unblinking view of what she calls “the ultimate destination for beauty.”

The Brooklyn-based artist photographs consultation rooms, “before and after” backdrops, and the machines used for cosmetic surgery.

Phillips uses color, a central composition, and spot lighting to deliver a dramatic cross-section of cosmetic surgeon’s offices from some of the nation’s wealthiest neighborhoods without showing the doctors, staff, or clients. By listing the location of each office, as in White consultation chair, Upper East Side (2006), or Before and after room, Beverly Hills (2007), Phillips tempts the viewer to imagine who will be in the chair for the next appointment, revealing judgments that are literally as superficial and as complex as the operations planned.

Phillips' background as a child model for the Ford Agency and later as a make-up counter sales-person allows her to reveal the business end of controversial medical procedures from a unique perspective. Phillips has taken her own "body issues" and redirected them into a well-researched, poignantly indirect look at “body sculpting” surgeries.

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