The Merry Makers , 78 x 56 inches, Oil on Linen, 2019 Available  The Merry Makers  Time on her hands  Encouraged her to make new friends  Expression and construction  Were measured with a yardstick  Mending and adhering  Kept everything from  Being  Ripped at the seams

The Merry Makers, 78 x 56 inches, Oil on Linen, 2019 Available

The Merry Makers

Time on her hands

Encouraged her to make new friends

Expression and construction

Were measured with a yardstick

Mending and adhering

Kept everything from

Being

Ripped at the seams

Everafter,  48 x 36 inches, Oil on Canvas, 2019 Available  Elsewhere vanished  Erasing unrest  Fading the effects of recollection

Everafter, 48 x 36 inches, Oil on Canvas, 2019 Available

Elsewhere vanished

Erasing unrest

Fading the effects of recollection

But a Dream , 42 x 28 inches, Oil on Panel, 2019 Available  Before the unknown  There was a dreamer  Resting in eternity  Among all the masses

But a Dream, 42 x 28 inches, Oil on Panel, 2019 Available

Before the unknown

There was a dreamer

Resting in eternity

Among all the masses

Monkeyboy and the Neighbors Cat,  24 x 36 inches, Oil on Panel, 2019 Available  He was man-made and  Naturally kin to evolution  Yielding  A business of  Orchestral yapping

Monkeyboy and the Neighbors Cat, 24 x 36 inches, Oil on Panel, 2019 Available

He was man-made and

Naturally kin to evolution

Yielding

A business of

Orchestral yapping

Boss Hog,  24 x 36 inches, Oil on Panel, 2019 Available  Believing there would be  A stockpile of  Sweets  He spilled his guts

Boss Hog, 24 x 36 inches, Oil on Panel, 2019 Available

Believing there would be

A stockpile of

Sweets

He spilled his guts

Dumb Dumb , 24 x 18 inches, Oil on Panel, 2019 Available  Underestimating his own skills,  He was mesmerized by his dazzling wand.  He hypnotized himself,  And was forever  Bent

Dumb Dumb, 24 x 18 inches, Oil on Panel, 2019 Available

Underestimating his own skills,

He was mesmerized by his dazzling wand.

He hypnotized himself,

And was forever

Bent

The Seamstress , 24 x 36 inches, Oil on Panel, 2019, Available  Tailoring her hair and  Extracting the sugary entanglement  Was a necessary adjustment  Mending the holes  And reshaping her expectations  Was a sweet skill

The Seamstress, 24 x 36 inches, Oil on Panel, 2019, Available

Tailoring her hair and

Extracting the sugary entanglement

Was a necessary adjustment

Mending the holes

And reshaping her expectations

Was a sweet skill

Dollface,  18 x 24 inches, Oil on Panel, 2019 Available  Delinquents  Organized loyally  While licking her fur  She assembled  A cat empire

Dollface, 18 x 24 inches, Oil on Panel, 2019 Available

Delinquents

Organized loyally

While licking her fur

She assembled

A cat empire

Pins and Needles,  24 x 36 inches, Oil on Panel, 2019 Available  Pricking your ideas  Noticeably stings  And needling  Denies nonsense  Emotionally entangling  The daydreamer  and  Leading to  Endless Spinning

Pins and Needles, 24 x 36 inches, Oil on Panel, 2019 Available

Pricking your ideas

Noticeably stings

And needling

Denies nonsense

Emotionally entangling

The daydreamer

and

Leading to

Endless Spinning

Wonderkin,  24 x 36 Oil on Panel, 2019 Available  Worried with wisdom  They were obligated to  Take her to  A better neighborhood  The do-gooders,  Trick and Treat  Elevated and reformed her  Into a nightmare

Wonderkin, 24 x 36 Oil on Panel, 2019 Available

Worried with wisdom

They were obligated to

Take her to

A better neighborhood

The do-gooders,

Trick and Treat

Elevated and reformed her

Into a nightmare

Pussface,  18 x 24 inches, Oil on Panel, 2019 Available  The pests uprising  Was soon spoiled  Forcing a  Catastrophic experiment

Pussface, 18 x 24 inches, Oil on Panel, 2019 Available

The pests uprising

Was soon spoiled

Forcing a

Catastrophic experiment

Simard Bilodeau Contemporary is pleased to present The Merry Makers, a solo exhibition by Illinois- based pop surrealist painter, Carrie Pearce. This collection offers the viewer a peak into the fantastical mind of Pearce, who perceives reality with a childlike curiosity and finds magic in the forgotten, the strange, and the macabre. As The Merry Makers leads the viewer down a yellow brick road of sorts, he or she will be transported in to the world of Ina, a child whose imagination and wonder have lifted her out of personal tragedy, and the muse of this collection of work. What follows are words from the artist, herself:

These paintings are about the magical world of make believe and imagination, which bring us hopes, dreams, fears, and wishes. Inspired, by a photo of a little girl in a full body cast, arched like a rainbow surrounded by her toys. Seemingly, being carried by her toy elephant. Ina is her name, and she was hospitalized from ages two through twelve. Due to a rare form of Tuberculosis, she underwent dozens of surgeries to fuse her spine and was in a cast the entire 10 years. Her parents were only allowed to visit once a month. She had only her imagination, nurses and a few toys. Ina is 89 and healthy. She was a seamstress, crafter and doll maker.

There are several characters in these paintings; Ina, as a child, fastened in to her cast/cocoon with her beloved toys; future Ina, her imagined self, as ballet dancer wearing a crown, crafting a merry world of disassembling dolls and toys and gluing them in cat dolls and lion rabbits; a younger future self, seen as a seamstress who has to cut her hair due to the suckers that got stuck there. Pins and Needles is inspired by an antique pin doll cushion. She is the villainess with spider web hair that traps the candy and toys (which represent the joys and rewards of life). She is seen with her son, Dum Dum, a boy made of doll parts and suckers. Boss hog is in charge of the candy and is inspired by an antique piñata.

Monkey boy is her loyal imaginary friend that would do anything for her. The vintage Halloween costumes of Dumbo and Sleeping Beauty are the do-gooders trying to “save” her.

I would like my paintings to inspire people to use their imaginations. There is no story that can’t be told, real or imaginary. I would also like to bridge the gap between fine art and pop surrealism, I feel as if I am somewhere between the two, and not sure where I “fit-in”.

Alongside Pearce’s paintings, Simard Bilodeau Contemporary is featuring a collection of her inspirational found objects and photographs, in order to allow the viewer to further immerse him or herself into the artist’s process. These strange, wondrous, and potentially even grotesque emblems of the past, which Pearce collects during her spare time, are the sparks behind her creations. Around them she forms a narrative, perhaps borrowing from historical figures or events, perhaps creating a fictional fantasy. The viewer is invited to be propelled by the mystery of these objects, just as Pearce is.

This solo exhibition of eleven paintings promotes imaginative faculty on the viewer’s behalf. Pearce’s work leaves no choice but to wonder who, what, why, when, and how? The innocence and naiveté of Pearce’s work end at its inception. Supporting her childlike storytelling is a foundation of technique and precision, influenced by 16th century masters. Pearce’s palette incorporates mahogany and sepia tones which speak to the antique and vintage influences in her work, while pops of vivid color conjure joyful feelings of a child’s birthday party, or more profoundly, the importance of lightness and glee amidst darkness and tragedy.