Arterie Fine Arts
Fast Food Still Life with a Scented Candle
Oil on Wood
24" x 24"
Amy Langoni
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My husband asked me what artists should be called during the recession. Are we ‘recessionists’ or the ‘working class movement’? I am a suburban mom of two working part time in child care. I became unemployed after both of my pregnancies, and being unemployed with little children makes you feel like an incompetent loser. I would take the kids for an afternoon nap, everyday, in order to paint, study, or job search. Working part time wasn’t enough; though, and our house went into the foreclosure/short sale process. I was painting in our unfinished basement, but, now, my house is a trace of my life. Families relocated, mommies and daddies unemployed, eating not-so-healthy, empty mini-malls, big stores gone-these are traces of life during this recession. How do I paint this? I paint this in a ‘mommy still life’.

I participated in my subdivision garage sale before the big move. I did an experiment, too. I displayed my artwork and set up my things like a boutique. Almost all the men liked the ‘fast food still life with a scented candle’, part of the ‘mommy still life’ series. They liked the reds and blues, which is funny because my preschool male students want to use red or blue for crafts. The men, also, liked looking at the food cartons and knew it was McDonald’s, but I didn’t paint the logo. They understood about copyright, and liked that they had to guess. So, this painting is my boy still life-red, blue, and food. Once in a while, everyone’s table is graced with fast food. I love the Dutch still lifes with just killed pheasant hanging in a window, but I didn’t have freshly killed carcass at home. Processed meat is the better option for my kids, right? Sure it is! The candle is to make it romantic or fragrant the house after, or give the painting an aesthetic quality. (Open to interpretation.)
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