You Are My Shining Star

Can you fake a bad painting? If you can, can you then automatically fake a good painting? Oh no! At "Big Dreams," Esther Pearl Watson's "deceptively naïve" art is fairly successful at faking unskilled, if completely charming work. The viewer is forced to wonder: Would I see this differently if its maker had been genuinely six years old? Am I manipulated to enjoy it because the artist is playing on my lowered expectations? Oh no! The visual motifs are starry nights, UFOs, and other subjects of childlike wonder; we give permission to enjoy them childishly.
June 1-26, 2010

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