In my much younger years, many a Sunday afternoon was spent glued to the television, enraptured by the movies of my parent’s generation. Each one filling my impressionable mind with images of the perfectly coiffed hair, sophisticated fashions and charming coquettishness of starlets like Doris Day, Audrey Hepburn and Leslie Caron. The work of California artist Tracey Sylvester Harris hearkens back to those glamorous days of my dreams.
Convertible, oil on canvas, 24×30
Those old films and their heroines led me to believe in a world in which women wore heels to the swimming pool, men were redeemable rakes and an awkward bookworm could be transformed into a beautiful swan.
Light Blue Slip, oil on canvas, 60×40
Starlet, oil on canvas, 60×40
They caused me to prance around our house in my mom’s high heels and a floating negligee dreaming of the glamorous and romantic life I would lead when I grew up. But soon, reality taught me its hard lessons and I realized that the worlds I so admired weren’t real after all and the world of my dreams began to look a little different. A bit more earthy and down to earth. A little less frothy but a lot more fun.
Cocktail Hour, oil on canvas, 36×48
But that doesn’t mean I don’t still occasionally long to thrown on a little black dress and pearls. Old dreams die hard.
To see more of Tracey Sylvester Harris’ work, please visit her website. You can also see her work in person, if you’re in the Los Angeles area, at Skidmore Contemporary.
All images are via the artist’s website.