South Florida native Rhys Kelly might have grown up in and around Broward County, but she’s long flocked to Miami for concerts and to explore the city’s arts scene. Her latest series, “What’s Your Perspective,” a body of work comprising pieces of art and jewelry centered around the human eye, is, well, catching the eye of art lovers everywhere.
Kelly casts eye forms using acrylic and acrylic paint, first pouring the acrylic into a mold and then painting the casting. “I discovered the process at a trade school I attended in Monessen, Pennsylvania,” says the 21-year-old. “They taught us how to sculpt, paint, and make dentures and prosthetic eyes. Once I learned the process, I was officially obsessed.” Her penchant for the beauty of eyes, she notes, comes from the idea that “they are genuinely the windows to our souls.”
In addition to the artwork and jewelry she is quickly becoming known for, Kelly plans to expand and create more large installation pieces in particular. “I’m currently collaborating with an amazing artist named Justin Gregory, who can pretty much sculpt anything you can imagine,” she says. “We’re working on a ‘Drippy’ series, which will involve giant eyeballs surrounded by a slimy illusion.”
In the end, regardless of her specific motifs, Kelly always has a mission in mind when it comes to her art: “My goal is to create more dynamic conversations and open the minds and hearts of everyone who encounters my work.” Prices for Kelly’s work start at $195 for jewelry and range from $500 to $5,000 for art.
Text by Chris Dultan