In a “nobility cabinet”, Marlies Pekarek brings together the many aspects of the tortuous ways that leads someone to esteem, project and ensemble of famous celebrities or precious objects. These are a hodgepodge of unearthed, reworked, mechanically copied and self-painted mini portraits, of bric-a-brac, busts, of this and that. Louis XIV, Napoleon and Marie Antoinette hang in diverse variations alongside tiny busts of Sissy, Mme de Recamier or Molière.
In this work series Marlies Pekarek looks for parallels in bearing, attire and depiction formulas, between religious and profane portrayals. She is interested in the iconographic and typological questions as well as in the history of these pictures’ reception and presentation. Thus the “nobility cabinet” alludes to court portrait galleries or to so-called galleries of beauties, like the most famous one in Nymphenburg Palace where Louis I gathered his era’s beauties around him. There are likewise allusions to the commercialization of such celebrities in museum shops as well as in private collections. The multiples fabricated by Marlies Pekarek range from serially produced to individually crafted.
Time Shifts, Patterns Stay the Same Nobility Cabinet 2013
Mixed Media, Wall installation (detail),
Installation: 201 x 250 cm
Kunstraum Engländerbau, Vaduz
The Guest Gallery
The starting point of her production is the paintings and sculptures of all eras of art history that generate portraits of actually existing or fictively constructed personalities, whose outstanding actions and capabilities have entered history and mythology.
In collaboration with curators from Swiss institutions, mini busts of each personality have come about as Editions that were molded from glycerin soap. The three-dimensional depiction is a realistic image of the living person on a reduced scale. The portrait gets skewed by having the contemporaries slip into the roles of historical and mythological heroines and heroes from earlier epochs, e.g., Aphrodite, Marie Antoinette, Louis XIV, Molière, etc.
The Guest Gallery 2012
Handmade soap, individually modeled, perfumed,
11 x 6 x 3 cm to 15 x 8 x 5 cm