Wednesday, January 15, 2003

Ivy Campbell and Zenobia Weigel - Hot House, Murphy Art Center - Jan. 15, 2003 - 4 stars


Ten-year-old Ivy is the daughter of artist Phil Campbell and 11-year-old Zenobia the daughter of artist Jo Legner Phil's partner, so it's no wonder that these two young ladies would be artistically ahead of the game for their age. Very imaginative and keenly observant, they've already staged four sold-out showings of their young drawings and paintings, the last of which was at Deano's Vinos. The girls talked about how they were founding their own theater club, having determined that a Shirley Temple styled Little Princess would be their first performance, all the while holding a yellow plastic Hello Kitty mini safe for their drawing sales. The 40 or so nude female drawings, executed in No. 2 and colored pencils, from 8-by-1O's to 2-by-2s, are quite admirable. Artist Lois Templeton purchased two drawings and praised the girls' confidence with portraying the naked female form and doing so with accuracy. They are all proportionately correct, cartoonish with outlines (not sketchy), each unique with individual expressions and Barbie enviable hairstyles that only girls this age could draw to boot. They asked their parents' permission to draw naked women, saying to Legner, "We need to do luxurious nude women." And so a reference book of nudes throughout art history was handed over and the prepubescent two copied classical poses for their darling line drawings. Every picture is appropriately titled for the woman depicted. Foe example, "Alien" depicts a single-breasted, naked, bulbous-headed alien, while "Devil" has red skin, a tail and horns popping out of her black Betty Paige hairdo. Priced art only $1 to $3, they would make a memorable Valentine's gift framed. The show ends when all the pieces have been sold; 317-686-0895. –Mary Lee Pappas

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