“Rucker’s art could be described as colorful bursts of insight into the mind of a creative genius that has connections to forces outside of the physical world. “Michelle Peterson, writing in Vida Y Sabor (Life and Flavor): “Paul Rucker: Angeles Eróticos”, March 30, 2004)
The “Painted Angel” persona was created for the opening night of “Erotic Angels”, which remained on display during March 2004 at the Vision Gallery in the Warehouse District of downtown Minneapolis. For this show, I acted as a curator, director, and public relations liaison: the concept, the majority of artists involved, and the promotion of this event were all my responsibility.
Nine artists in all dazzled the crowd with brilliant and evocative paintings, sculpture, and photography. “Erotic Angels” explored the idea of angels as embodied creatures as well as heavenly messengers. To immerse people more fully in the concept of “Erotic Angels,” we encouraged our attendees to come in costume, and they sure did– 300-400 people showed up, and more than 3/4 had dressed up!
We saw an enormous range of angel wings, from white, to black and red, to wings upside-down, and made of feather-dusters! ”Erotic” ran the gamut from slinky Goth leathercreatures to angelic Catholic schoolgirls. One guest came with a burning pierced heart painted on her chest, while nearby models sashayed along in varying stages of elegant undress. Prom couples from a white-on-white heaven rubbed shoulders with sculpted adonises and pneumatic babes.
Every aspect of my costume had been prepared for months ahead of time– the leather jacket hand-painted to look like an energetic force of nature, the headdress assembled from black stretch velvet, peacock feathers, gilded flowers, and an eviscerated bellydance belt. and with my face and hands painted by myself– ribbons of pure jewel color over a surface of seamless black. I felt like an ambassador from another world.
As one attendant put it: “The fascination of this sight was like discovering a never-before-seen mythological species. Like a multi-colored hallucination, Paul emerged as if stepping out of one of his paintings.”