November 1–December 15, 2019
Poser Tube Dolls takes its title from an online illustrator named ElisaDesign. Using the Tubes tool on PaintShop Pro and sourcing from various Poser image-rendering databases, Elisa creates surreal vignettes featuring baby-faced women surrounded by haunting props that suggest a sense of innocence lost.
In her first Los Angeles solo exhibition, Silva recreates sculptural mise-en-scène renditions of Elisa’s online purgatory. Three large, elaborate platforms are used as stages to display these uncanny sculptures that merge interpretations of Elisa’s designs with Silva’s own cartoon infatuations: a jumbo half egg covered in the Chevrolet logo; an auto suspension coil dressed in Laura Ashley pleather; a curvy, begging rat girl; and a mash-up scorpion-cornucopia-bouquet.
Adorning each platform are photographs of realistic life-size dolls superimposed onto picturesque settings both urban and rural. The dolls’ choreography references the viral images of Lolita Richi, a Ukrainian model known online as the ‘Real Life Teenage Barbie,’ who often posts pictures of herself in city parks or nature scenes, almost as if the pastoral settings lend a desired authenticity to her plastic look.
Behind the gallery’s large curtain wall hangs a pair of oversized ballet slippers pierced with giant fishing hooks. Their shape resembles novelty fishing lures, bright and phallic devices meant to attract prey. A song titled “Poser Tube Doll Anthem,” written by Silva and composed by Chase Ceglie, plays on loop near these deadly slippers. The song is intentionally fragmented, opening with a suspenseful piano riff that then melts into a country ballad. The yearning, timeless sounds echo throughout the space. Sheet music is available to sing along to the instrumental, as if the room is a karaoke booth: Young, pretty, insatiable. God put me here to accomplish certain things…I’m so far behind. I’ll never die…
Poser Tube Doll t-shirt text designed by Ray Younghans.