This painting portrays a carnivalesque scene by a pond, where hybridized characters relax among one another in friendly kinship. A fool in love and a performer adorned with a headband and cape take a break from the expectations and assumed roles that their ostentatious costumes have set for them. All the figures in this composition are at ease—resting, lost in thought or observing. Vibrantly colored and expressively patterned lilies appear throughout the scene, a common motif throughout the artist’s work.
Lydia Maria Pfeffer mines a cross section of psychological strategies, cultural symbolism, rites and rituals. The artist draws and paints worlds in which escapism is revelation and queerness is a healing journey. In Pfeffer's compositions, anthropomorphism, gender play, and eroticism abound—featuring a morphing cast of stylish characters inspired by the fables, folk tales, and mythologies of the artist's youth. At the core of each of Pfeffer's paintings is a basic desire for love and belonging. The artist creates safe spaces for figures pulled from the ether, allowing them to tell their tales, process their traumas and heal.
At the core of Lydia Maria Pfeffer’s paintings is a desire to be loved. The artist’s work depicts worlds where escapism is revelation and queerness is a healing journey, as they explore eroticism, gender play, rituals and cultural symbolism. Pfeffer’s paintings create a safe space where figures drawn from fables and myth can share their stories, process traumas and heal.
Lydia Maria Pfeffer was born in Austria in 1976. The artist received a BFA from the Fashion Institute of Technology in New York City and an MFA from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago in Illinois.
Pfeffer’s work has been exhibited internationally, including at: Galerie Droste in Paris, France and Wuppertal, Germany; Brand Library & Art Center in Glendale, California; Club Pro in Los Angeles, California; New Image Art Gallery in Los Angeles, California; OCHI in Los Angeles, California; and Center on Halsted in Chicago, Illinois.
Pfeffer’s work has been featured in publications, including: AUTRE, Hyperallergic, Los Angeles Times, Flaunt Magazine, PaperCity Magazine, Amadeus, Full Blede, and Fabrik.
Pfeffer currently lives and works in Brooklyn, New York. The artist is represented by OCHI in Los Angeles, California and Sun Valley, Idaho.