“I’m so used to not being allowed to make any mistakes, that when I finally am, it’s difficult to accept them,” Persson says at the opening at Gallery Hanahou, glancing at one of her paintings where the watercolor has been allowed to leave a long, runny streak.
“After a while you begin to censor yourself, so it’s good for me to do art like this.”
Persson is first and foremost an illustrator and is as such successful, with corporate clients like Coca Cola, Absolut Vodka and UNIQLO and editorial clients like Vogue Nippon, Harper's Bazaar and Nylon Magazine. But she’s an equally interesting artist. Says Koko Nakano, her American agent:
“Stina’s work is really fascinating because it crosses over genders and ages. It’s elegant and feminine yet has strong and masculine qualities at the same time.”
According to Nakano, people of different background fall for Persson’s work.
“We get a lot of street artists; hip, young people who want to work with her. Both men and women.”
Persson’s females – and they are only females – are inspired by the 1970’s when authenticity was the commandment and battle songs were sung around the camp fires.
“Everything’s much too slick today,” Persson sighs. “It’s as if everything must be botoxed.”
Persson’s women need no botox. Proud and beautiful they look up and ahead – unaware, or perhaps not caring about, their slight imperfections. They know, as we all do deep inside, that it’s the imperfections that make us interesting and human.
“Perfectly Flawed” runs through October 1. For more information: Gallery Hanahou, 611 Broadway, New York City.
by Eva Stenskär