The Three Laces (2019-2022)
As feminine symbols, The Three Graces have inspired this series of abstracted, sketch-like works of art that employ fabric remnants artist Caroline Rust has thoughtfully extracted from garments in her wardrobe and vintage collection.
Represented in numerous Great Masters’ works, like Botticelli, Raphael, Rubens, The Three Graces were mythological goddesses, daughters of Zeus; Aglaia (Brightness), Euphrosyne (Joyfulness), and Thalia (Bloom) – used to denote the personification of charm, beauty, and creativity.
In The Three Laces series Rust blends her love of textiles, the joy she finds in tactile experiences, with painting to facilitate the observation of clothing features like lace edging, seams, and straps. Their smallness and familiarity make them seductive to the artist. True, The Three Laces series emphasizes detail, as it enhances the whole; upon deeper study we can see a profound thesis take shape. The layers synthesize an allegory for the concept of surface when recognizable clothing features go below the paint to absorb new identities, while simultaneously staying on the surface of the boards. These works exhibit the way we dismantle life-experiences then piece them harmoniously back together to reshape ourselves, as we move closer to becoming.
Furthermore, by activating the basis of Punk fashion design, the artist takes injury, even acts of force (as with ripping apart garments), and mending (as with patching together torn garment details) to create modern and authentic ideals of beauty laced with both vulnerability and strength. What transcends is a broader awareness of the feminine experience.