Saturday, June 27, 2009

REVIEW: Mary Jo Krolewski at Lazy Pear

by Janet Van Fleet

OK, full disclosure: Mary Jo Krolewski is one of the co-owners of the Lazy Pear Gallery in Montpelier, and I am one of their gallery artists.

But Mary Jo's new little gem of a show, Good Humor: Faux Fur Food Sculpture, is too much fun to avoid reviewing because of humor -impaired worries about conflicts of interest.

Mary Jo has been showing her food-related fur and cloth sculptures at the gallery ever since it opened, about three years ago. Previously, they've been installed in a bakery case (above) next to the gallery counter, which has been a source of fun and conversation as new items make their appearance.

But from June 3 to July 5, 2009 her new work is being shown in an exhibit space just inside the front door, and it is big, bold, and funny. My favorites are two 49" tall Fur-Pops (right), huge suckers covered with ... fur -- patched squares of fake fur in fabulously luscious colors.

Also on exhibit is a group of elegant cloth-covered teacakes, teacups (china, not fur!) holding furry teabags with "Lazy Pear" hang tags. And a berry box of furry strawberries that have the most amazing, soft red fur and silky centers.

Four Fur-cicles (above, each with a bite taken out of it) are displayed in pairs of puffy glove-hands, as though a chubby cloth person couldn't resist a double-fisted binge-and-splurge. And with these prices ($50 each), you might afford to buy two at a time!

Of course surrealist artist Meret Oppenheim's 1936 Breakfast in Fur (at left) is the historical ancestor of this work. Mary Jo's work has fur all over too, except that now it's fake fur, which takes the art history fun and games further down the road and makes it all very much more amusing -- thus Good Humor!

In times like these we really need some good laughs, a good cup of tea, ice cream treats, and art that doesn't take itself and its subject matter too terribly seriously. This show FURnishes it all!