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Fadeaway Girl 5

coles phillips illustrationI think of all of the C. Coles Phillips (1880-1927) art that I have written about thus far, I think this is my favorite of his Fadeaway Girls. I love the candlestick lamps, the black background, her hair do, the jade pendent she’s wearing and the gold trim on her dress. Granted I’m not sure what the imagery is supposed to be about what looks like a slice of toast, I still like this one.

I found this Fadeaway Girl in black in a book of poetry published by the artist in 1912. The book was entitled A Young Man’s Fancy. It’s full of short little love poems doodle-like page elements by another artists and Phillips’ wonderful Fadeaway Girls.

Like most Fadeaway Girls, this one is wearing a dress the same color as the background that she was drawn upon. Even without clear lines, our minds eagerly fill in the negative space with the reset of her shoulders and upper arms. She’s portrayed as if caught wondering if she should eat the bread that’s on the plate before her in what looks like a restaurant setting. Her hair and makeup along with the positioning of her hands would certainly imply that she is a lady of some station and with the manners to match. Oh, what could she be thinking as she gazes down at her plate?


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