2022 Height (cm)
23 Length (cm)
15 Depth (cm)
30 Weight (g)
5000 Materials and Techniques
Book, foam, fibreglass, acrylic nails, silicone Subject/Description
The notebook is an organic extension of Goodman’s artistic practice. Made out of artificial fingernails, the sculpture entangling the notebook transforms it into a living organism, evoking a snake while seductive and sumptuous and yet inherently dangerous. The use of acrylic fingernails references this kind of intoxicating menace. The repetitive and meticulous gestures used to make her works mimic nail salons' repetitive and meticulous labours. Despite being an extension of the quintessentially attractive female body, nails can scratch and draw blood, especially during the throes of passion (or death). By employing these materials, Goodman's work challenges the popular culture definitions that narrow the possibilities of female identity to extremes of consumption, aspiration, obsession, desire and anxiety. Archival Fund
AtWork Archive number
Detour 2.0 New York, See the world through creativity, One World Observatory, 2022 Bibliography
Frances Goodman is a multimedia artist born in Johannesburg, South Africa, who works with objects such as acrylic nails, false eyelashes, sequins, and jewelry to create sculptural and relief works.
By employing these materials and efforts, Goodman’s artworks draw attention to popular culture definitions that narrow the possibilities of female identity to extremes of consumption, aspiration, obsession, desire, and anxiety. Though her work reflects a society in which objects can define and burden people, it also celebrates the use of these materials as symbols of empowerment.
Her humorously dark sculptures and installations suggest how both real and perceived self- conscious anxieties play a disproportionate role in governing women’s lives. In her examination of beauty conventions and common material possessions, Goodman reveals both the self-imposed and external pressures to conform to societal expectation. Meanwhile, the glossy and sensual surfaces of her sculptures capture the underlying libidinal energy that motivates consumption with the gleaming, metallic glint of nail polish.
She obtained a Master's Degree in Fine Arts from Goldsmiths College at the University of London in 2000. Goodman holds a Laureateship from the Hoger Instituut voor Schone Kunsten
(HISK) in Antwerp, Belgium. She was a recipient of the Cecily Brown Fellowship for Outstanding Woman Artists in 2014 and took part in The Fountainhead Residency Programme in Miami, USA, in 2015. Frances Goodman cemented her practice with the presentation of her debut solo exhibition, Intimate/ Inanimate Moments in 2003 at The Process Room, Irish Museum of Modern Art in Dublin. She has since exhibited extensively in South Africa and internationally. Recent solo exhibitions include; Uneventful Days at SMAC Gallery in Cape Town in 2020, South Africa; Spit/Swallow, at Galleri SPECTA, in Copenhagen, Denmark, in 2018; Beneath Her at Richard Taittinger in New York City, USA in 2017 and Rapaciously Yours, Richard Taittinger Gallery in New York, USA, 2016; Let Down Your Hair, curated by Jennie Lamensdorf as part of the (TEI) Art-in-Buildings Programme in New York, USA; Lick It, Walgreens Art Windows, Art Center South Florida, in Miami, USA, all in 2015; and The Sweetest Ride at TM Projects, in Geneva, Switzerland in 2014. Personal data
South Africa, 1975. Artist
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