NARRATOR: This work, Blossom, is a collage made from magazine cutouts. DeFeo made a small number of these in the mid-1950s.
DANAMILLER: She took many of the images from girlie magazines. She collaged them into the form of this pinwheel floral motif, so they transcend their origins. The initially lurid imagery transcends its origins to become something else, a new reality, this floral motif.
She, I’m sure, was very much influenced by the going-ons of her peers, artists such as Jess and Wallace Berman and Bruce Conner, many of whom were experimenting with collage.
They were all looking to found materials, things that were readily available, cheap, things that spoke to the world around them and reflected the rapidly changing postwar consumer society. And doing so in a very sort of ironic and humorous fashion.