Reviews and Comments
Colette Standish’s collage work of cutouts, sketches, and photos captures the complexity of Anaïs Nin’s relationships and writings. Standish uses not only Nin’s life as muse but also the work itself, invoking the characters Nin created. Similar to Nin’s writings, this is artwork that can be revisited, reexamined, and remain relevant.
Colette, you have captured the atmosphere, the erotic exhilaration of entering the world of Anais Nin. Needless to say, I identify with your work. Congratulations on completing a strong body of work, a tribute to the Surrealists as well as to Anais and her seductiveness.
When Colette Standish submitted “Love,” a mixed media image for the 2011 issue of A Café in Space: The Anaïs Nin Literary Journal, I was immediately struck with how, in spite of the fact she was not herself represented, the spirit of Anaïs Nin spoke strongly and clearly. Standish has become a regular contributor to A Café in Space for the simple reason that her art—sometimes playful, sometimes surrealistic, and always passionate—visually encapsulates Nin’s vast and multifaceted life and work.
I appreciate both the timeliness and timelessness of this exhibition. Standish’s mirrored photomontages and light-box collages reflect and shine light on some questions regarding eroticism unanswered in Nin’s work. Standish’s inspired meditations of Nin and her influences offer viewers opportunities to think about how much our understanding of what constitutes eroticism has changed over the years—as well as how much we still need to explore and learn. Taken as a whole, the exhibition is Standish’s multifaceted artistic contemplation of how form and style can shape meaning, calling attention to Nin’s and her own mutual predilections for Surrealist collage.
I first met Colette Standish in 2015 at one of my ‘Anaïs, A Dance Opera’ shows. We immediately connected as two artists making work around the phenomenon that is Anaïs Nin. Shortly after that I was introduced to her gorgeous, sensual artworks. Ms Standish speaks a language that is both intimate and grand, female, strong, subtle and bold. I knew that a collection of work was being created with a focus on the life and times of Anaïs. Ms. Standish has ventured fearlessly into territory of Anaïs’ life that is difficult and, at times, taboo. Her take on Anaïs is breathtaking and unique. I believe that Colette Standish has something important to contribute to the ongoing social discussions about Nin, her work, her life, and her impact on our culture.”