Hollis Sigler 1983: An Interview


1983 | 00:35:33 | United States | English | B&W | Stereo | 4:3 | Video

Collection: Interviews, On Art and Artists, Single Titles

Tags: Blumenthal/Horsfield Interviews, Chicago Art, Interview, Painting, Visual Art

Hollis Sigler (1948–2001) was a Chicago-based artist. She received degrees from both Moore College of Art and the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. Her mature artistic style was faux-naïve, featuring paintings whose subjects, furniture and clothing set in doll-house type interiors and suburban landscapes, were stand-ins for the implicitly female figure. She was an openly lesbian artist and a prominent member of the faculty of Columbia College in Chicago. After being diagnosed with breast cancer in 1985, Sigler’s themes became more personal, confronting ideas about body image, heredity, illness, mortality and hope.

In this interview with Kate Horsfield, Hollis Sigler discusses the influences and development of her work, from her early huge paintings of underwater swimmers to the wild, explosive, scratchy, dramatic autobiographical paintings of interiors for which she is known. “The sexuality that exists in the drawings isn’t meant as a focus, except for the feeling part of it. How it’s read by other people I never intended to be important. Some people look at them and wonder if it is a man and a woman or a woman and a woman—what’s the sexuality of these people? I can only say that sexuality enters into every relationship... whether it is with our parents, our siblings, or our friends. They are all like love affairs."

A historical interview originally recorded in 1983 and re-edited in 2005 with support from the Lyn Blumenthal Memorial Fund.

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