#186 The Id

by Carlye Knight

Allegra holds court beside a scratched thrift-store mirror titled The Id. It’s her laziest work, and that’s saying something judging by the rest of her oeuvre: variations of graffitied motel art, and solid color canvasses that could make Rothko puke from boredom.

“So what is this piece about?” a student-reporter type asks once the hipster crowd stops overanalyzing her “art.”

“Our basest selves.” Even Allegra’s voice wears American Apparel. “I deliberately spot-lit it with fluorescent light to show how ugly our pursuit of instant gratification can be.”

My husband stares, enraptured. I just roll my eyes.

“Where did you study your technique?”

She gives a condescending look through her ironic glasses. “Creativity can’t be taught. I simply tap into my raw energy, and use breath work. I don’t censor myself, so my work has a primitive edge to it.”

I want to smash The Id, pluck a shard from the mosaic and stick her with it just to see if she’d react. No, she’d pretend, as usual, that I’m invisible, even as blood pinpricks her tissue-thin teeshirt. Instead, as the crowd moves to the next exhibit, I pull her art-school ID from my pocket and call her name.

She turns around, locks eyes with me.

“You left this. In my husband’s car.”

The two of them blanch, and her acolytes glare at me.

“Peyton College of Fine Arts,” I tell the reporter. “That’s where she studied.”

The acolytes’ collective glare turns to her, and I taste victory.


Ginger said...

<3. <3 very much.

Catherine Vibert said...

Gawd, I know how they both feel. Talking about one's art can be SO pretentious, and yet it's expected of the artist. And anyone listening either eats it all up, or barfs. LOL. Excellent.

Flutterby said...

Gotta love a "just desserts" story. Wonderfully tasty!