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More than 40 works by artist Meridith McNeal - including a variety of two-dimensional and sculptural pieces, such as hand-sewn paper shoes, luggage and corsets - are on display now through July 29 as part of the solo show "Beautiful Necessity" at Figureworks (168 North Sixth St. at Bedford Avenue) in Williamsburg.

McNeal’s work has strong roots in domestic, sewn, decorative and "feminist" traditions, according to Figureworks curator Randall Harris.

A detail of McNeal’s "Blue Book: 1906, 2001" is pictured at left. McNeal old GO Brooklyn that she filled the pages of this bound 1906 society listing with 300 blue matte paintings.

"I work with odd materials, books, gloves and corsets - wacky stuff, the stuff having history," said McNeal. "This 1906 book was a major find for me." She illustrated the pages with paper doll-like articles of clothing women in 1906 would have worn. Visitors to the gallery are invited to turn its pages while wearing gloves that have been hand-beaded by McNeal.

"There is a lot of stuff to try on or go through in the show," said McNeal. "It’s not how we are traditionally taught to look at art." McNeal will discuss both her work and women artists who have inspired her, at the gallery at 1 pm on July 21. Friday ­ Monday, 1 pm to 6 pm, and the exhibit can be viewed after July 29 by appointment with the artist, by calling (718) 875-4047, ext. 13.

Updated 4:00 pm, November 10, 2010
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