rances Shepard and Puja Sahai (1997)
oil on canvas
For 20 years, Toronto artist Joanne Tod has presented glamourous photo-realist images in many solo exhibitions. She is particularly fascinated with luxurious fabrics and draperies; The lustrous qualities of silk and satin and the intricacies of fabric design.
Working from photographs of still objects and women in replendent gowns, Tod copies details of the ultra side of feminine culture and haute couture. Her paintings are mirror images without metaphor.
In the current series, Tod depicts Indian/Canadian friends preparing for two different weddings in Toronto. Dressed in their ethnic finery, the women are posed in typical Western hotel settings. While many of the settings include such lavish elements as chandeliers and satin-upholstered chairs, Tod dutifully records the less salient with equanimity. She shows us the chrome legs of banquet chairs, a glimpse of a wood grain Formica television stand, and an open hotel room closet that offers a view of spare pillows and secured coat hangers.
© Mia Johnson