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Reality TV Transfigured in Oil on Canvas

Vanderpump Revealed

Reality TV Transfigured in Oil on Canvas

One night while I was watching Vanderpump Rules, I paused the show to get up and do something in the next room, and when I returned to the TV, I was stopped in my tracks by the unmistakable artistry in the framing of the scene I had happened to leave onscreen. I didn’t immediately know what to make of it, but as that indelible season of revelry and heartbreak wore on, I kept having the same thing happen again and again. I soon realized that any given episode of the show concealed dozens of gorgeous images – exquisitely disguised within their lowbrow context – so I started painting those images on the biggest canvases I could fit in my studio. 

I only became more and more fascinated by the screenshots I collected to use as references the more I worked with them. Not only were the cinematic shots of a West Hollywood drenched in neon light visually stunning, the emotions on the faces of the women and men on the show were strikingly poignant and evocative in freeze frame. The power of these paintings hinges on their ability not only to celebrate the hidden beauty of the show, but also to capture the fundamental appeal of reality TV itself: even when the on-air drama is at its most contrived, the potential for real human emotion to pierce the artifice is always there.

Vanderpump Revealed exposes those fleeting moments of emotional resonance and beauty – moments which are so easily overlooked or written off in a mass market reality show, but which the alchemy of oil paint on a five foot wide canvas render undeniable.

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