A hand-engraved rear-illuminated mirror (The Collection of Impossible Subjects) depicts a museum wall hung salon-style with empty frames, with one frame opening onto a trompe l’oeil painting (Invisible Self-Portrait in My Studio) based on a flash photograph of an identically installed and framed collection of mirrors reflecting the artist working on the painting. A Polaroid of the artist’s 28-year old copy of the Uffizi Gallery guide is installed nearby. The image on the cover is of Johann Zoffany’s The Tribune of the Uffizi, which inspired the red walls and gold frames of the painted part of the installation.

The Museum of Failure: Collection of Impossible Subjects, Ellen Harvey, 2008. Hand-engraved rear-illuminated Plexiglas mirrors in aluminum frame, 8 x 12’ (2.44 x 3.66m) and Invisible Self-Portrait in my Studio (oil painting on six wood panels, 8 x 12’ (2.44 x 3.66m). Photography: Locks Gallery & Ellen Harvey Studio.