A Tale as Old as Time
Kolby Weston Deagle, Boise State UniversityFollow
ink and watercolor
As an artist I enjoy depicting fairytales because they are not only interesting to interpret, often times they are universal. It is my hope that this allows anyone who has heard the original stories to recognize and connect with the versions presented in my work. Many original European fairytales center around forbidden love, taboo deeds, and secrets remembered only by the trees of an ambiguous ‘Deep Dark Woods’. Keeping with this theme - and using iconic characters and narrative structures - I altered three specific tales to reflect different scenarios more relatable in popular culture. This series focuses on LGBT narratives, changing standard gender-norms and heterosexual romantic entanglements into queer versions.
“An Apple for a Heart” places a bisexual Snow White between male and female lovers, invoking the pressure many bisexual people face to end up in same-sex relationships to bring validation to their identity. “What She Left With the Sea” presents a transgender Little Mermaid, who in addition to shedding her tail in favor of legs, takes on a more traditionally female body; magic replacing hormone treatments and surgical procedures some trans-people choose to undergo. In “A Tale as Old as Time” the Beast falls for a handsome boy rather than a pretty girl, as homosexual love has been around just as long and burns just as beautifully as heterosexual love. All three pieces are follow a bottom-to-top narrative, wrapped in the tangled hair of sleeping figures; the tales the stuff of their dreams.
Beyond the conceptual aspect, I place immense focus on surface level aesthetics. The slender stylized figures, and serene facial expressions are inspired by the art produced in mediaeval Europe, while the color palette (limited to primary colors) offsets the mature themes with childlike simplicity, as the tales were originally meant for children as way to learn about life.
© Kolby Weston Deagle, 2017.
Since May 17, 2017
fairy tale, LGBT, illustration, watercolor, 3 dimensional, 3D, narrative