Darkly Iconographic: Art by Jeannie Polisuk
Jeannie Polisuk combines cute, fuzzy figures with an eye for darkly iconographic composition. The artist’s works – in installation, painting, and sculpture – are at once inviting and uneasy, demanding a conscious effort from viewers to unpack them.
In our previous feature of the artist’s work, we looked at the ways Jeannie uses motifs of childhood to evoke a multi-layered response in her viewers. Her current body of work seems often to centre on a anthropomorphized rabbit figure, one that looks very much like a child’s stuffed animal come to life, and engaged in a variety of less-childlike acts including drinking and smoking.
Symbolism appears prominently throughout Jeannie’s portfolio, whether it’s the use of certain objects and figures in paintings, or in installations like Figures of Speech, where a series of small, square paintings are arranged into a crucifix shape. In combination with her childlike figures, Jeannie’s symbolism creates an overall exploration of hazy, distant, perhaps painful or repressed memory.