Galleri Urbane’s recent show, Allie Pohl’s “Ideal Woman,” is more than meets the eye. Upon first glance it struck me as a show so entrenched in our current vacuous culture that I was tempted to dismiss it. I was wrong. I met Ms. Pohl and struck up a conversation that made it quite clear that she gives off both heat and light while illuminating a landscape I sometimes find mind-numbingly dull. For instance, she takes aim via her art at a Barbie doll-driven mindset as well as the ubiquitous iPhone photographs that populate Facebook like mushrooms on a cloudy day in Portland. How? She took the latter to task by photographing her own underwear in swanky Beverly Hills bathrooms. The former — Barbie dolls — are scrutinized by turning them into neon dopplegangers for what contemporary women are supposed to be. It was an exercise in cultural commentary that was illuminating — and, obviously, the artist is a terrific person to turn to with questions.
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