Philo Vivero's "Winsome Woman," as much of his art, treads the fine line between poster-art/advertizing and fine art. "Winsome Woman" could easily be seen as an image advertizing any product related to feminine sexuality and beauty: entertainment, lipstick, soap, perhaps even cars. What makes the woman's sensuality so readily marketable is, surprisingly, not her nudity, but her theatricality. Though she does not seem to express any identifiable emotion, her eyes and lips are drawn in a vivid-red characteristic of poster and pin-up art that was popular in advertizing from the late 1800's through the 1950-s. Nonetheless, her body, painted with minimal flesh-tone colors and outlines, resists, stubbornly refusing to sell. In its display of anatomical accuracy, minimalism and flowing sensuality, her body seems more artistic than theatrical, destined for a tableau in a museum rather than a poster or a stage. This ambiguity of function, this mixture of styles, this mobility of display is what entices, surprises and excites in Vivero's art.
Professor Claudia Moscovici
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