A jewelry/metals student, Lily Smith says, “I’ve always been really interested in work that goes on the body. . . . I’ve also worked a lot with fabrics in undergrad and grad school.”
She uses the term “jewelry” loosely as work that goes on the body and talks about the body. She combines the ideas of jewelry with those of garment and fashion, finding an interest in the colliding of fields. For her piece that will be in the Georgia Museum of Art, she combines hand-dyed silks and thinned-down silicon with added pigment painted on fabric to create the textures of fleshy forms. The result is a wearable piece that recalls the feel and form of different parts of the body.
She explains her interest is not only in work that goes on the body but also is about the body. The garments she creates mimic natural forms of the human form but are exaggerated. With a skin-tone color palette and materials that resemble skin as much as worn fabrics, she makes voluptuous plump forms that hang around the figure when the piece is worn.
“This work talks about our standards of beauty and the ideal female figure. They're like dresses but rather than accentuating a thin figure they're fatty forms with multiple breasts and bellies, celebrating the fact that maybe that can be just as beautiful as a thin more fit person. Celebrating the curves and the fat and flesh in general,” she says.
Her creations take beauty to a richly authentic level with their yearning to be seen and felt. These garments continue to evolve with her interest in the process of making as well as the intrigue of the final state. They hold the viewer captive while evoking feelings about their own personal connection to the human form.
Smith’s work will be shown at the “Master of Fine Arts Degree Candidates Exhibition” at the Georgia Museum of Art from April 11 to May 3, 2015.