The Glass Coffin: Liza Corbett Revisited

Below are some recent works from one of my longtime favorites, Liza Corbett. Her fanciful watercolors enchant me with their elegant, melancholy surrealism, sweeping, willowy lines, and languid Victorian ladies. I especially like the motif of eyes peering out of women’s skirts, as if their vestiture were a kind of morbid extension of their bodies/selves. Her delicately lovely images put me in mind of spiritualist seances, mythological stories where women are transformed into animals, and the membranous veil, as diaphanous as her art, between the living and deathly realms. I love the artist’s statement on her site, which elaborates:

{Liza Corbett’s work contemplates The Summer-Land, the spirit world that lays unseen alongside our own. She creates visual narratives populated with otherworldly women and animals, under heavy suns in hazy, wan skies. Her subject matter is tinged with the menace of pre-modern life and suffused with an air of melancholy. Influenced by nineteenth-century spiritualism, by Dark Romanticism, and by myths, fables and old tales, Liza aims to create images that, like tarot or other methods of divination, suggest a strange and impenetrable significance underlying our worldly existence.}

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Huzzah, I have acquired a copy of the beautiful sold-out Malina print from BloodMilk Exquisite Corpse! This illustration of expressive hands, flowers, snakes, and planchette, by the amazing Liza Corbett, combines my love of floral arrangements in art with my fascination for spiritualism.

Exquisite Corpse takes its name from the 1920s parlor game in which surrealists each added to an assemblage of words or images in turn, and is a collaborative collective focusing on limited runs of art objects by independent artists and craftspeople, including perfumes, incense, handmade trinket boxes and offering bowls, and other things of uncanny beauty.