Christine Major
Cuisine rouge

2010

Acrylic on canvas
198.4 x 131.5 cm
2012.11
Gift of the artist

Cuisine Rouge depicts a scene in which a dramatic event seems to have just occurred. A woman lies motionless on the floor, eyes open. The position of her body paradoxically suggests the beauty of a classical “nymph,” the telltale shape of a Barbie doll, and Greek tragedy. Disparate food items surround her. We are brought into the midst of disorder, abuse, and human degradation that are the result of actively fighting hunger. The multi-coloured palette is striking and oversaturated, while the Fauvist and Expressionist painterly treatment lends a powerful sense of suffering to the work, pointing to anorexia and bulimia as the cause. The artist’s own studio is depicted in the painting, showing the material traces and physical tools that allow the creation of her work, but with a certain dissociation from reality; the kitchen is visible too, that banal space suggesting that the drama that has enfolded is a daily one. Christine Major’s interest in themes of enclosure, survival, and violence – particularly, violence against women – is highlighted in this work.

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