This February, Stephanie Chefas Projects is opening All This Useless Beauty, a solo exhibition from Northern California-based painter and Juxtapoz Summer 2018 featured artist Serena Cole, curated by Gabe Scott. Throughout Cole's career, the physical body has served as the framework for which to look inward, outward and through the feminine psyche. Her watercolor and pencil renderings are composed of found images and anonymous individuals, which take on new roles and identities as assigned by Cole.

The images of these nameless individuals have been harvested for appropriation based on an emotional connection to the content. In working from pre-existing images, an individual in a photograph is no longer confined to existing in the original context presented. Revelations of her own subconscious are projected and manipulated on anonymous individuals, juxtaposing emotions and intuitions on to a new model that once only existed in a perfunctory realm.

These women are presented in a new and fictional dimension, which serves as a mirror to Cole’s observations on gender politics and feminine emotions, as they relate to our current culture and political sphere. Freed from the traditional frozen frame in which they exist solely as objects of desire, their physical makeup is reconstituted to express personal discomfort with their said roles.

All This Useless Beauty makes reference to Elvis Costello, the revision of common tropes within various periods of art history, and the origin of each of her reproductions. These faces are handpicked from the pages of contemporary fashion and each model has been reformed with an identity and emotions that bear the complexities of being a woman in today’s world. It is also in line with Cole’s self-described style as ‘’delicately controlled, sumptuously obsessive and devoted to mannerist beauty."