Cool Kids on display

By Geoff Lee

December 13, 2016 12:00 AM

GOO GOO FOR GAGA Gaga, cigarettes and music is the name of this latest piece in a new set of "Cool Kids" paintings by Lloydminster artist Brandi Hofer. Her new body of art will be on display at the Rouge Gallery in Saskatoon for most of the month of January. SUBMITTED PHOTO

Lloydminster artist Brandi Hofer found inspiration in the junior high self-image mentality to create her latest set of paintings under the Cool Kids label.
She describes it as “an art series created within the mindset of a junior high student intending to make the coolest poster possible for the school dance” in her artist statement.
She said the new pieces representing pop culture icons question the influence of pop culture on society in the current age of social media.
“With such impossible standards of image, beauty, sexuality and upheld values are we forming a generation of confused and misconstrued youth?” asked Hofer.
She says her body of artwork attempts to answer questions of personal identity as people live out their fantasies embodying the status they wish to acquire or emulate.
Hofer cautions, however; that a lot of people approach art without reading the artist statement.
“Most people are drawn into the work for the aesthetic reasons first and then, if they are really interested then they will look into the meaning.”
Hofer’s work of pop culture icons will be on display for interpretation at the Rouge Gallery in Saskatoon from Jan. 3-28 to the delight of gallery owner, Wanda Underhill.
“Brandi is a young up and coming artist—she creates big; she’s got big ideas and her draw is a full spectrum,” said Underhill.
“We’ve had young people buying her work like big pieces 60 inches by 60 inches, to people that are in their late 60s—she’s got a great audience.”
Underhill said Hofer’s work is also a great draw for the gallery as her reputation spreads.
Hofer has worked in several art media including drawing, print making, and painting, with oils, acrylics encaustic, mixed media and watercolors. She has long focused on female portraits and has explored themes of objectification, fetishism, the emotional self, and the female psyche.
The Cool Kids set includes about 12 pieces including a large 66 by 58-in artwork representing Alicia Keys with four large size oil paintings.
“We’ve got a Lady Gaga, a fellow named Patrick, a fellow with a mustache and Justin Bieber,” said Underhill.

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