My local comic book store Red Shirt Comics is selling my Tippi Hedren limited edition prints in two colors, Kim Novak, Batman and Joker prints, all in various sizes. Tippi and Batman magnets are also being sold there. Please do check the store out– awesome comics, paraphernalia and books! It’ll be your new favorite place!
Very excited to announce I will be participating at this week’s New York Comic Con! I’ll be at booth #1061 everyday with Rune Works Productions, signing limited edition prints of my Hitchcock paintings. My Tippi Hedren: the Birds print will be sold (an original and a blue version).
Tippi is part of an ongoing series I am doing of the leading ladies in Hitchcock’s films. Stay tuned for more!
Join me on Saturday, April 9, for my next solo exhibit at Harmony Vineyards & Gallery! Located on Stony Brook Harbor, the beautiful waterfront building the gallery and tasting room is located in was built in 1690 and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. There will be a jazz concert after the reception for those who want to stick around.
Paintings inspired by the films of Alain Robbe-Grillet (select paintings from my series), abstract pieces, and artwork inspired by Old Hollywood will be on display. Everything is available for purchase. They will be exhibited for an entire month. See you there!
The wonderful Anna McKay of The Visual Female interviewed me just before the new year. I had a lot of fun answering her questions and was honored to be chosen as Visual Female of the Month! I talk about my second exhibit, a few of my favorite artists, give some movie recommendations, and more. Click the preview if you’re interested!
MY SECOND EXHIBIT
Here are some photos from my winter exhibit at Home Art Gallery in Port Jefferson.
NEW URGE READER 2: EROTIC FICTION BY NEW WOMEN WRITERS
At the end of 2015, I was asked by Norman Conquest to write an introduction to an anthology of erotic fiction. The New Urge Reader 2: Erotic Fiction by New Women Writers is out now, published by New Urge, an imprint of Black Scat Books, known for publishing English translations of French surrealist and absurdist works, as well as new editions of classics such as Venus In Furs and Fanny Hill. I talk a bit about my debut art show in the intro, as well as my meetings with legendary writer of erotica, actress, dominatrix, and Alain Robbe-Grillet’s widow, Catherine Robbe-Grillet. A perfect gift for Valentine’s Day, you can buy it here.
FIAF : FRENCH INSTITUTE ALLIANCE FRANÇAISE
Back in October of 2015, just a few days after my Alain Robbe-Grillet inspired art exhibit at Holyrad Studio, I sat front row at FIAF to hear Catherine Robbe-Grillet and her partner Beverly Charpentier speak, with Toni Bentley moderating. Catherine talked about the ceremonies she conducts at her 17th-century French chateau and her journey from being a submissive to becoming a dominant.
When asked if she misses being submissive, her reply: “No. I am both dominant and submissive because I live as a submissive through Beverly.” She was witty and funny, and Beverly was competely charming. Catherine inspires me enormously (I mean, look at what she’s wielding!)– it was a truly moving experience. One of my favorite lines said by Beverly in the Vanity Fair article by Toni Bentley: “It is not about pain. It is about how to suffer beautifully, like Saint Sebastian.” If you’re curious about their relationship, I urge you to read that fascinating article.
I got to meet and talk to Catherine and Beverly afterwards. What a once in a lifetime opportunity. I told her I would give her any painting from my Alain Robbe-Grillet series that she wants. Anything for Catherine! On a sidenote, I saw one of my favorite directors in the book signing room– Radley Metzger. I didn’t recognize him until someone said his name as he was leaving. I would’ve loved to have spoken with him. Metzger directed the gorgeous 1974 masterpiece The Image, based on the classic erotic novel by Catherine. The book was banned and burned when it was released in 1956. Catherine was 25 when she published the book.
ANTHOLOGY FILM ARCHIVES
A few weeks later, I saw Beverly Charpentier, Catherine Robbe-Grillet, and Sylvère Lotringer speak after the screening of Lotringer’s never-before-seen film (even Catherine’s first viewing) Violent Femmes at Anthology Film Archives. The film is a conversation between Catherine and an American dominatrix, recorded in the early 80s and edited in 1998 (neither one understood what the other said due to their different languages).
It was quite surreal to hear my name in a conversation between Catherine and Beverly (in French) before the screening and have them come up to me. “We’ll speak after the film,” Beverly said after they greeted me. After the film and the audience talk ended, I waited for a long time as various admirers came up to them. Beverly mentioned how patient I am and then translated to Catherine everything I said to them about my recent Alain Robbe-Grillet inspired art exhibit in Brooklyn.
“You are converting people into Alain fans!” they exclaimed cheerfully.
They were also thrilled to hear how everyone who came to the reception during my exhibit loved the screening of Trans-Europ-Express.
The three of us then walked into the adjoining room where everyone had gathered and Beverly insisted I get myself a cup of wine before it was all gone (I listened, of course). They were extremely charming and funny as we talked about non-prurient topics (I didn’t feel the need to ask anything and the audience had done all that already during the talk after the screening).
As we said our goodbyes, Beverly asked, “Are you ever in France?” I said I’ve been there once and I always plan on going back. “We will keep in touch. Let me know if you’re in France and we will meet again.” A truly amazing night, one I will never forget…
Escape this blistering cold and join me for some hot cocoa, candlelight, and eros on Sat, Dec 5th, at 7pm! At Home Art Gallery in beautiful Port Jefferson, Long Island (only a few minutes from where I live, right next to the Long Island Sound,and near Stony Brook University, which I graduated from a few years ago), I will be exhibiting several of my paintings.
For those who weren’t able to make it to my debut show in October, this is your chance to see my Alain Robbe-Grillet inspired acrylic and ink paintings, which are my interpretations of scenes from the first four films of French filmmaker, writer, and genius Alain Robbe-Grillet.
Other paintings will also be on display, as well as older artwork (abstract pieces), which explore the same themes present in the Robbe-Grillet series: namely, pleasure & pain. The exhibit will be up until the New Year.
NEW STORE NOW ON SOCIETY 6
Black Friday Sale
In other exciting news, I also just opened my store on Society 6 so you can purchase gallery quality Giclée prints and canvas prints starting from $15. Don’t miss out on the Black Friday Sale! Click below to be directed to my page.
As December nears, I will be adding more prints and stationary, as well– so you can order Marquis de Sade birthday cards and erotic holiday cards for your beloved… I will keep you all updated, as always <3.
Last Saturday was the day of my Eros And After exhibition at Holyrad Studio! Thank you everyone for coming. It really meant a lot to me for people to brave the terrible weather. I hope you enjoyed my paintings inspired by Alain Robbe-Grillet‘s first films (L’Immortelle, The Man Who Lies, Trans-Europ-Express, & Eden and After) and the screening of Trans-Europe-Express.The storm outside kept blowing against the building but to be inside Holyrad Studio and Alain’s world was such an intimate experience. We had candles burning and wine flowing! Here are some photos taken by me from my low-quality smartphone camera (I really need to buy a real camera!) unless otherwise noted– many are taken by my friend Natasha Bluth who did a beautiful job. The studio had extended the exhibition to Sunday, Oct 4, but select pieces are still on view until the end of October. Contact Holyrad Studio if you’d like to take a look or purchase anything.
If you want to know about my process, my interest in Alain Robbe-Grillet, and what’s next for me, check out my recent interview with Liz von Klemperer on Art Report.
Eros And After exhibition
It’s almost here– just days away! I’ve never been busier and more exhausted but I’ve learned a lot throughout the process of planning my first art exhibit. It’s been quite a whirlwind and I can’t wait to finally construct this fantasy-come-to-life on Saturday morning. There will be clips from Alain Robbe-Grillet‘s films playing at Holyrad Studio as guests weave their way through my paintings (most of which will be available for purchase). There will be a reception and film screening of Robbe-Grillet’s film Trans-Europ-Express at 7pm. For frequent updates, please check out our Facebook event page (and invite all your friends, of course!). Nibble on some cheese with crackers and enjoy the wine that will be served!
Imagine my shock and exhilaration when I discovered that Catherine Robbe-Grillet, Alain Robbe-Grillet’s widow, the most famous dominatrix in France and writer of erotica, will be in NYC the week of my show! She will participate in FIAF NY‘s The Art of Sex & Seduction series on Oct 7, just days after my show. Get your tickets now. If you attend my event, I strongly encourage you to check this out as well.
“Get a glimpse inside the secret ceremonies and sadomasochistic rites of France’s most notorious dominatrix. A screening of provocative highlights from La Cérémonie and Le Contrat, Lina Mannheimer’s documentaries about Catherine Robbe-Grillet, will be followed by a rare appearance by Madame herself.
The modern-day Marquise de Sade and Beverly Charpentier—the woman who gave up her freedom to serve her—will talk with author and journalist Toni Bentley about their love, friendship, and rituals.” – FIAF
Before you go, read Robbe-Grillet’s marriage contract of “conjugal prostitution” written in 1958– though Catherine never signed it. Also read Catherine’s sadomasochistic erotic novel The Image, which was published under the pseudonym Jean de Berg in 1956. Radley Metzger adapted it into his 1974 film of the same name which can be seen on Fandor (you can view all the Robbe-Grillet films that inspired my paintings there, as well.) It’s resplendently graphic, mouthwatering and arousing.
Big news: I am very excited to announce that I will have a solo exhibit (!) of my Alain Robbe-Grillet paintings. I will host a party for my show and maybe even screen a film of his at the brand new Holyrad Studio in East Williamsburg at on October 3rd. Many of these paintings will be up for sale if you want to spice up your walls. My paintings focus on the first four films of Alain Robbe-Grillet: L’immortelle (1963), Trans-Europ-Express (1966), The Man Who Lies (1968), and Eden and After (1970).
“Within you, may all ecstasy be in agony, and may all pleasure yearn to die.” – Marcel Schwob
My series of paintings on the films of Alain Robbe-Grillet started with a pencil sketch of the scenes that first sucked me into his world: it involves a bustier, a coil of rope, and a strangulation (more on that in a later post).
“Reality and fantasy aren’t just intertwined, they’re indistinguishable.” – Leopold Von Sacher-Masoch
Afterwards, I started using acrylic paint, Sumi ink, and India ink on watercolor paper. These paintings are self-portraits just as much as they are my recreations of my favorite scenes from his films.
“A kiss is the beginning of cannibalism.” – Georges Bataille
The ink splatter technique started off as an accident. I liked the “mistake” so much that I would return to it again and again. The versatility of it– that it can suggest both violence and ecstasy– appeals to me. Likewise, every “scratch” made with my calligraphy pen nib or every stroke of my paint brush, is a wound, scar, or tattoo that brands and defiles the purity of the face (perhaps not dissimilar to the “sex flush,” when one develops reddish spots on their body during orgasm).
“The taboo would forbid the transgression but the fascination compels it.” – Georges Bataille
Without even planning it, I seemed to focus almost exclusively on images of strong, disembodied hands (that either circle a delicate throat in a chokehold or tenderly grasp a face to lean in for a kiss) and eyes (that either look directly at the viewer, shut to savor the pleasure or pain being felt, or are covered altogether with a blindfold).
“Extreme seductiveness is at the boundary of horror.”– Georges Bataille
I am fueled by the themes of transgression, voyeurism, power, murder, desecration, and evil. Supposed oppositions attract me: the lure of fear, the beauty of betrayal, the nobility of abjection, the euphoria of pain, and the rapture of mortification. Other series in the future (many of which will also be film-related) will explore these themes.
“Pornography is direct and eroticism is indirect. In eroticism, there is a critical distance and a judgement on sexual impulses, while pornography is the absence of judgment. When the crudity of the sexual act goes through the imagination it becomes eroticism, and when it doesn’t, it is pornography.” – Alain Robbe-Grillet
In addition to Alain Robbe-Grillet, I am inspired by the work of Yukio Mishima, Jean Genet, the Marquis de Sade, Georges Bataille, Leopold Von Sacher-Masoch, Baudelaire, Stéphane Mallarmé, Alberto Moravia, Pier Paolo Pasolini, Jean Rollin, Jess Franco, among others.
A painting I did in honor of the great Christopher Lee. Besides the Dracula films, my favorite films of his are the Hitchcock-tinged Scream of Fear (1961), the sadomasochistic The Whip and the Body (1963), Jess Franco’s Eugenie… the Story of Her Journey into Perversion (1970) loosely adapted from the Marquis de Sade’s Philosophy in the Boudoir (one of my favorite books), and the Bond film The Man With the Golden Gun (1974). And I can’t forget his TV appearances in the Alfred Hitchcock Hour and The Avengers. May you finally be able to quench your bloodlust, Dracula.
… to my noir-infused underworld of murder ballads, hard-boiled odalisques, gangsters, jazz musicians, beatniks, and aesthetes.
My name is Elizabeth Yoo. I am a freelance illustrator and noir writer living in New York.
My tumblr blog lejazznik was my first attempt (a few years ago) at making a website– it mainly became a place for me to post and reblog my favorite films, photographs, music, art, and literature. With this website I hope to finally achieve what I initially wanted to make: a focused, visually stimulating refuge in which I can share my favorite things– the things that make me happy– and indulge in my many interests.
At the moment I am working on a series of paintings inspired by the films and novels of Alain Robbe-Grillet. I can’t wait to share my noir stories with you– they will all be accompanied with an illustration or two.