Jean Conner: Collage

Conner’s collages range from playful to contemplative with their otherworldly scenes and surrealist views of the familiar, yet the most striking aspect of her work is the extent to which she uses the medium for formalist pursuits. In a number of examples, it is difficult to discern where a cutout image ends and where another begins, as in a 1983 untitled collage that shows the neck and head of a woman whose back is to the viewer and a second woman in profile placed at the center whose perfectly coiffed hair matches the texture, color, and cut of the first. Women are frequent protagonists of these carefully assembled scenes, but the overall feel of the works suggests that early on Conner was more concerned with the oversaturation of images in popular media and the power of advertising to groom consumers than an overt feminist agenda.
September 13, 2022