Posted by: jeannineatkins | August 8, 2010

Painter Emily Eveleth’s Pretty Doughnuts

Shakespeare wrote “a rose by any other name would smell as sweet,” but of course the bard wrote a lot of things that contradict each other, and he knew better than anyone that what we call something can change it. Say the “evaporated cane juice” in a cracker my husband and I just ate, which I pointed out is sugar. Or various ways of saying doughnuts, which are the subject of paintings by Emily Eveleth in a wonderful show called “Luscious” now at The Smith College Museum of Art

These aren’t Dunkin Donuts – I imagine the artist lives near a very good German bakery —
and some critics call them depictions of sensuous flesh, wounds, eroded boulders, moments in a narrative, or studies of aging, time and space, or light. The paintings have evocative titles such as Songs of Innocence, Mandala, Shelter, or some taken from pulp novels.

When my friend Mary Beth asked me to go to a “what looks like an interesting show,” she knew food was involved, but she didn’t know the theme would stick to what’s jelly-filled, and we couldn’t know how stunning this would be. Oh the shades of red and purple, the variations of flakiness and light, the broad strokes, the huge canvases. Mary Beth and I oohed and we ahhed before going out for lunch, where the desserts didn’t glow, though we did skip the salads and go for carbs.

And what’s the takeaway? Call it sugary and flaky or call it art, which can come out of any subject with the right color and strokes. Here’s an artist who stopped and looked long, maybe a little obsessively. And she makes us stop and look, too, with eyes wider open at walls and breakfast. Leaving us a little hungry, but also filled.



  1. So cool! Thanks for sharing :).

  2. Jama, I was thinking of you at this show. Of course! I knew you’d appreciate a person who could turn jelly doughnuts into a decade or so’s worth of stunning work.

  3. doughnut art

    Wow, this is amazing I must go see this!

  4. If the artist lived near a German bakery, then they’d be Berliner (as in “Ich bin ein Berliner”). These look absolutely delicious.

  5. Re: doughnut art

    You will love this, Ellen!

  6. Doughnuts or Berliners: this exhibit is beautiful!

  7. Paintings of gigantic donuts . . . what a wonderful idea. Makes me want to color great big pictures of peanut butter cookies or something. Have my eyes “wider open” at lunch. What a great turn of phrase, Miss Poet.

  8. You’ve left my eyes a little wider open just with this post. And I would’ve gone for the carbs, too! (Might need to go for some now, in fact, after reading this.)

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