Houston artist Cory Willingham is a contemporary realist and storyteller at heart. After receiving her BFA in Painting in 2010, Cory designed, painted and built stage sets, backdrops and props for a renowned theater production company in New Orleans for six years. She has recently moved back home to Houston to draw inspiration from the city she loves.Like her favorite artists Edward Hopper and James Rosenquist, Cory conveys a complex narrative within deceptively simple imagery. Inspired by her love of nature, psychology and art history, Cory’s common themes revolve around instinct, memory, heritage, and self-determination. The beauty of her work, though, is how these themes are delivered in bold color at face value but, most often, with a sense of wit and levity. Among her best known paintings are the Polaroid series, in which she employs tromp l’oeil to invoke a sense of nostalgia and express a desire to hold on to precious memories.