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Having An Artistic Eye
Amy Guidry's last work finds the humor in serious topics

By Herman Fuselier

At first glance, the sharp details and life-like images stand out in Amy Guidry's paintings. Then, the biting messages start to emerge.

A fast-food meal looks inviting until a closer look shows fries with a biohazard symbol and a syringe stuck in the cheeseburger. A young woman looks serene in her yoga pose. But she's also holding a prescription bottle and pill.

A woman, seated at the dinner table, shakes pepper over a diet pill on her plate. A chained refrigerator lurks in the background. The painting is titled Bon Apetit.

"I'm just tired of seeing all the advertisements for diet pills," said Guidry. "I think they're ridiculous. I thought it would be funny putting a woman at her kitchen table, peppering her diet pill. I gave her this lethargic look, just to emphasize she's relying on poor nutrition. Not only that, but she's willing to pop pills than have a real meal. "Then you see the chained refrigerator in the back, that she has to restrain herself. We use all these means to keep ourselves from gaining weight."

The paintings are part of Guidry's Social Commentary series, which is on display until Friday at the Lafayette Art Association Gallery. The images can also be seen on Guidry's Web site, www.amyguidry.com.

The series is another highlight in a busy year for Guidry. She's featured in the December issue of American Artists Magazine after her art won first place in acrylics in the magazine's 70th Anniversary Art Competition. Her work has been selected for the premier issue of Studio Visit Magazine, which will be published by The Open Studio Press. Guidry will be part of juried shows at the Ogden Museum of Southern Art at the University of New Orleans and Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth, Tex. She will participate in 10 Women/10 Perspectives, an all-female artist invitational show in Nassau Bay, Texas. Guidry's art will also be featured in the upcoming season of MTV's The Real World Season 20, which is currently being filmed.

Guidry, who grew up in Slidell and has lived in Lafayette for the past nine years, credits a humorous, unsubtle approach for her success. "I really want people to stop, reflect and re-evaluate these issues," said Guidry. "Really think about what these paintings mean and what you can do about it. Sometimes people tend to get lost with art. I'm not reaching anyone if it's above their heads. I want to make sure I'm heard loud and clear. I think I accomplished that."

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