Francesca Facciola’s One Trick Pony

Review by Olivia Whittick

Francesca Facciola’s paintings are an insane mix of precise technical mastery with deliciously deranged approach to subject-matter. Like maybe you have a dream that your dog is wearing thigh-high boots, sitting on the couch smoking a cigarette and berating you for never trying to meet new people. Facciola paints this type of scene—heavily symbolic, often psycho-sexual compositions featuring strange elements and artifacts that don’t necessarily have a place together, but could, if life were a perpetual dream-state. “I think everyone at one point has shared a dream with someone else. I like to think of my paintings as that: me sharing my fabricated memory story with the viewer in hopes that they form a connection with it,” says Facciola. 

For “One Trick Pony,” the artist’s first solo show, Facciola builds out her world further by heightening the object-ness of her paintings—with puffy, pillowy frames, perverted playing cards, and by actually sewing the red latex pony outfit from “Painting Pillow” and the giant dolly from “See Me Feel Me Touch Me Heal Me.” The spectator, viewing this odd menagerie, gets the eerie sense that maybe this world Facciola depicts is real, blurring the line between figurative painting and theatrical world-building. Francesca Facciola’s “One Trick Pony,” is on view at Carl Kostyál until December 11th.

We can jump into the fire, 2021, oil on canvas, glitter, 72 × 108 in.
My dirty deck of cards, 2021, S30 card stock (52 cards) based on 17 oil on canvas, 52 playing cards, each 7 × 5 in. (17.8 × 12.7 cm)

Luncheon, 2021, oil on canvas, 111.76h x 182.88w

See me, Feel me, Touch me, Heal me, 2021, oil on canvas, 182.88h x 127w

The painting pillow, 2021, oil on canvas, lasso, cotton fabric with polyfill stuffing, 27 × 27 in.

Self Portrait, 2021, Latex body suit

Photo: Yuki Shima. © the artist. Courtesy of Carl Kostyál