A former fashion designer, sculptor Patricia Ayres depicts the body under systemic oppression—alluding to the human figure rather than recreating it in the literal sense. It was only after working in fashion (the artist earned undergraduate degrees from the Fashion Institute of Technology and Brooklyn College, before earning her MFA from Hunter College in 2019, where she studied under Nari Ward), that Ayres realized her skillset from the fashion industry could serve her well in sculpture. Stretching and constraining materials like military elastic straps, metal hardware, padding, and wood, the resulting totemic creations exude sexual dominance and control, paired with elements of constraint borne from the artist’s upbringing in the Catholic Church.
Ayres’ work is geometric and crude, large-scale and raw—massive and vulnerable in equal measure—presenting a dynamic take on the human figure via neutral colors that evoke human skin in a manner entirely unlike what we’ve seen before. One might argue that the artist’s nonlinear path is responsible for this.
Becoming An Artist Is Not A Linear Path
Fountainhead Residency Yearbook 2022