Sara Pope is renowned for capturing the seductive power of the mouth with her enticing paintings of full, glossy lips. Exploring notions of femininity, beauty and communication, her irresistible artworks have become her own unique, visual language.
This week, Sara will be presenting an exciting showcase of new artworks available to buy exclusively at Enter Gallery from Friday 20th November at 10am. Sign up for your release reminder
Preview the artworks here
Featuring original paintings, sculpture and a new limited edition print exclusive to Enter Gallery, ‘Coco’
We caught up with Sara to talk about her new 'virtual' showcase…
Tell us about your new virtual showcase at Enter Gallery?
I’m excited to introduce my new exhibition, which is made up mainly of new work which I started at the beginning of the first lockdown. I think the bleakness of the beginning of the first lockdown compelled me to seek refuge in colour, I find thinking about colour such a joyful way to spend time! I think you can definitely see that experience reflected in my new artworks.
What inspired your new print ‘Coco’?
I created the artwork COCO as a result of a shoot I did with a model whose expression and features I found really inspiring. I wanted to create a piece capturing her.
In transforming the artwork into a print, I wanted to emphasize the lips even further, to make the glossy red lips look even glossier, almost dripping. So a screen of specially formulated, ultra high gloss varnish has been applied to the lips. I also added a 24ct gold background to the piece to increase the sumptuousness of the red colour.
How do you choose the models who feature in your work?
When choosing a model I consider proportion and symmetry. I’m drawn to the symmetrical, but I also like anomalies such as a wonky tooth, it seems to accentuate the symmetry. Also quirks such as gap teeth are interesting. They are a move away from what you’d think is perfect beauty, but often actually increase attractiveness.
I like to work with models who have a diverse range of mouth shapes. Since I’ve spent so much time studying the mouth, I realise how varying mouth shape/anatomy can be, so I love to work with models of diverse nationalities, both male and female.
One of the most important things when choosing a model is that they can be expressive using just their mouth.
Some of your new originals feature dots which look like a new style for you – what made you decide to go spotty?
I think my main reason for introducing dots was to introduce the possibility of playing colours off each other. During lockdown numero uno, I began to investigate more deeply the interaction between colours, and the effect they can have on each other. I loved making combinations of three, loads and loads of combinations of three colours.
Another reason I like the idea of dots/pixels is that they represent the building blocks of today’s visual/ media language in print and digitally.
Your work has been collected all over the world, tell us more about one of your favourite shows abroad?
Having a solo show in Paris was really wonderful... I just love Paris. Also, having a solo show this year on the beautiful island of Corfu, in between lockdowns, was a most welcome antidote to a pandemic.
You have released a sculpture with Loes Van Delft – how did the collaboration come about?
Loes and I had followed each other on Instagram for a while.. mutual respect. Then she got in touch to suggest that we do an art swap, which then morphed into doing a collaboration.
Do you have new projects or collaborations in the pipeline?
Yes! At the moment I’m working on a digital artwork, in collaboration with Tiger Heart Tech. I’ve never worked with movement before so I’m really excited to understand what the possibilities are for movement in a digital realm.
Are there any other mediums or techniques you want to try?
I’m enjoying embarking on exploring what I can create using tech.
Who is your dream client?
I’d love to be commissioned to paint the lips of some iconic figures... Kate Moss, Grace Jones, Mick Jagger... Cardi B...
Why do you think art adds to a home and what would you want your work to add to a space?
Art provides such a wealth of possible emotion and experience, I think are infinite reasons why art adds to a home. I understand that people perceive many things from my art, but a frequent theme it seems is one of joyfulness.
What is your favourite thing about Enter Gallery?
Enter Gallery is a feast for the eyes, there’s so much great art on the walls. I love that there’s always something new to discover. I also find it to be a super welcoming space.
What shade of lipstick do you wear?