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Feminist beauty queens need cake too…

Orly Cogan gets it. She really does.. like how can you be cute and sexy, good and naughty, love ruffles and make an excellent case for feminist theory. I’ve talked about Orly Cogan before.. she’s one of the first artists I interviewed wayyy back. We kept in touch over the years, and when I went to New York, I was sure to stop by for a studio visit.

Orly typically works in embroidery on vintage textiles, her scenes are whimsical world where sexuality and cake are quite natural. She’s also gone out and done installations like Confections a picnic of knitted cakes and a Shelter from the Storm Tent with frolicking and pets.  It was really amazing to view everything in progress, she has loads of anitque table cloths which she transformed into art, building something new out of the forgotten.

Her work is intensely personal, and has certainly evolved over the years, she’s always expressed her love of dichotomies, archetypes and stereotypes… polarities, Madonna/Whore pin-up girl, Lolita… femme fatale. Things that are so external, yet affect all of us in one way or another, Orly’s revealed how it’s affected her stitching saints and anxious cake eaters. What I find striking is the humor she finds polarity between stereotype and personal experience.

Here are some photos I’ve taken of a few compelling pieces of work… there were so many more, but we’ll have to see them another day.

Magic Ring

Confections (details)


The Affair

Baby Doll

More threads…

A lovely hat and two faces…

Shelter from the Storm Tent

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11 comments for “Feminist beauty queens need cake too…”

  1. Wow! I love the cupcake and cake!! :)
    So cute!!

    Posted by Tami | March 11, 2009, 1:35 pm
  2. I could spend all day in that studio. She is very creative!

    Posted by ClandestineChic | March 11, 2009, 1:43 pm
  3. ❤ tami…it’s sponge cakes!
    ❤ clandesine… you and me both. maybe we can apply as assistants!

    Posted by jennine | March 11, 2009, 2:29 pm
  4. holy shit this woman is absolutely AMAZING!

    Posted by niki | March 11, 2009, 6:41 pm
  5. Yep, she gets it. Without this paradox we would be lost for inspiration, all running around in our little pre-defined boxes never seeking to explore the depths of our nature. This is what makes for good art, fashion and love.

    Posted by super kawaii mama | March 11, 2009, 7:00 pm
  6. wow, i am such a fan! thanks for introducing me to this!!

    Posted by mermaid | March 11, 2009, 9:09 pm
  7. amazing textile artwork. great imagination.

    Posted by sara | March 12, 2009, 12:14 am
  8. ❤niki… yep orly is my hero
    ❤mama… nice way of putting it. i like that.
    ❤mermaid, glad you like her!
    ❤sara, agreed ❤

    Posted by jennine | March 12, 2009, 4:36 am
  9. everything in this post is amazing but i’m especially fond of the cupcake and sponge cake !

    Posted by Vanessa | March 12, 2009, 7:58 am
  10. does she have a studio & do you have the address? would love to go and see her studio next time i’m in NY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Posted by Jilly | March 12, 2009, 11:30 pm
  11. Orly is amazing, her art continues to inspire me. She is also completely real and doesn’t have a pretentious bone in her body, did I mention hard working as well. Great choice for your blog Jennine

    Posted by lucy mink | April 6, 2009, 5:47 pm

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