In an exploration of the dichotomies present in our everyday lives, Cirque Noir features a series of paintings and sculptures that challenge our perception of good and bad, beautiful and ugly, real and superficial. Artists Kelly Denato, Kathie Olivas, and Stickymonger, each working in diverse media, address these dichotomies through figurative work that is at first blush visually engaging and beautiful, and which, under closer examination reveals its complex symbolism.
Responding to the anxiety provoked by the manner in which each of us is observed, Stickymonger’s work is representative of the gaze. Utilizing eyes throughout her work and as primary subject matter, She embraces that which both fascinates and frightens her. By incorporating these eyes into her work the Artist strips them of their power, while simultaneously encouraging them to look back at the viewer that views them creating a participatory experience. - From Cirque Noir , AFA gallery New York.