The green-eyed, long-lashed Petra wears an off-the-shoulder blue dress. Her hair is piled high atop her head and the blue, pink and black locks are remindful of peacock feathers. Her tilted head and slightly puckered, pink lips imply attitude.
Rue, the woman beside her, looks almost identical, but with darker lips, a mauve dress and swirly locks of mostly pinks and reds. Somehow, she looks slightly more approachable than Petra. Perhaps it's the pink hearts nesting in her hair.
"Petra and Rue" is one of more than 20 works in "Twisted Sisters," Lisa "Coma Girl" Perz's solo exhibition opening Saturday at Undergrounds Coffeehaus in Fort Lauderdale. While Perz generally dislikes themes, this exhibition is her attempt to stick to one. "I feel that as women we carry a lot under the hood and have many sides to our story," she says. "We can come off sugary-sweet and in the next minute be vicious. ['Twisted Sisters'] plays on how there are different sides to every girl."
The show marks her debut in two media: digital drawing and watercolor. It comes a year after Perz retired the markers she says were causing her migraines. "Since I was 12, I've had a Sharpie in my hand every day," she says. "And now, if I open them, I get a headache within minutes. They obviously don't agree with me, which breaks my heart, because not only am I a master at markers, but I have hundreds of them."
Adapting to her new media has been difficult. "I don't have as much control with the paintbrush as I do with the markers," Perz says, "so it's been a bit of a challenge. But I'm getting there."
She is, however, finding advantages in working digitally. "I'm able to experiment a little bit more and take on things that I feared drawing," Perz says. "I don't like drawing hands. I don't like drawing legs. But when I can edit it a little bit, I feel like I'm playing. So there's a little more experimentation, and I'm having more fun."
While her love for bright colors and black lines remains evident in her new works, the watercolors provide more color consistency and a softer quality. "The colors are much more delicate, so it's going to be interesting to see what people think of them," she says.
In addition to paintings and drawings, "Twisted Sisters" will include Coma Girl jewelry, housewares and accessories. "I have probably over 26 products," Perz says. "That's why I haven't done a solo show in so long, because I've been doing mostly craft shows. I find a lot of people don't have the wall space or budget for artwork these days. ... So I said, 'OK, let me offer my stuff as merchandise.' And whatever blank stuff I find that I think my art can fit on, I've made it.
"It'll be a carnival," she adds.
Colleen Dougher operates the South Florida arts blog Arterpillar.
When: Opens 9 p.m.-midnight Saturday, Feb. 9, and runs through Feb. 23
Where: Undergrounds Coffeehaus, 3020 N. Federal Highway, Fort Lauderdale
Contact: 954-630-1900 or Facebook.com/undergrounds.coffeehaus