SELF REFLECTION: A Group Show of 21 Female Artists Addressing Self-Portraiture
The Untitled Space Gallery
45 Lispenard Street Unit 1W NYC 10013
Opening Reception: September 27th | 6pm – 9pm
Exhibition on View: September 27 – October 8 | 10am – 6pm
Since the onslaught of social media, the practice of taking selfies has become ubiquitous, normalizing a degree of narcissism and self-promotion previously unseen in everyday life. But what if we were to stop scrolling in order to zoom in on the potential of the self-portrait as a tool for personal and societal exploration? An upcoming group show at The Untitled Space does just that. Opening on September 27th at The Untitled Space, SELF REFLECTION, is an exhibition of 21 female artists addressing self portraiture. The work featured in the group show dives past the shallows of the typical Insta-girl selfie in order to delve into the deeper meaning the work of artists exploring self-portraiture as a cultural and political statement.
Participating artists use the practice of self portraiture as a means to contemplate, as both creator and subject, contemporary issues of gender, identity, sexuality, body image, censorship, and self-liberation. Through their own process, be it autobiographical, metaphorical or inspired by performance and impersonation, these artists present visual narratives that interrogate social, cultural and political dialogues. Self-portrayal becomes a means to address the personal as political via self-reflection and reinvention, tackling conventional notions of female image and taboo. Of SELF REFLECTION, the curators stated,
“In light of the modern day obsession with the selfie, it is important to turn an eye on the work of contemporary female artists who address self-portaiture, not with self promotion in mind, but to interrogate contemporary society and the social and political values we grapple with.” -Curator Indira Cesarine
The self-portrait has been a staple of art history for centuries, defining our social and political climate and a reflection on contemporary culture. In the past few decades the self-portrait has evolved into a much larger dialogue, largely due to the cultural shift to electronic communication and popularity of social media. In an age where the selfie has become a prominent means of self expression, SELF REFLECTION presents contemporary female artists that are not merely using their mobile devices to self promote, but work with self-portraiture as a means to present their own inner dialogue, confronting the human condition through varied artistic mediums.
Grace Graupe Pillard uses composite photos to interact with well-known museum works in order to ask the question, “What is Art?” Oil painter, photographer and performance artist Sarah Maple, creates her likeness in order to contemplate her mixed heritage and reclaim her own image. Photographer, Polly Penrose, integrates her body into various physical spaces in an exploration that puts a literal spin on the meaning of “fitting in.” Erin M. Riley delves into online intimacy in her tapestry weavings. threeASFOUR founder, ANGE, is a one-woman-show of self portraits that uses vignettes to explore existential themes and Hiba Schahbaz uses her work to address issues of personal freedom, destruction, sexuality and censorship by unveiling the beauty, fragility and strength of the female form.
Other artists in SELF REFLECTION use diverse methods such as tea painting, watercolors, collage, medium format and Polaroid photography to take the self-portrait beyond its classic definition. They present themselves in their own terms, using their imagination to expand upon dual roles of creator and subject, artist and performer. They interrogate stereotypes of woman as mother, wife, lover or sexual object in works that are at once compelling narratives. Their image becomes their canvas, a tool for self-examination and cultural contemplation.
SELF REFLECTION continues The Untitled Space’s tradition of highlighting female artists and their visual responses to current culture. The exhibit will run from September 27th – October 8th, 2016 and includes artists Ahn Sun Mi, Alexa Meade, Andrea Mary Marshall, ANGE, Coco Dolle, Carol-Anne McFarlane, Cornelia Hediger, Grace Graupe-Pillard, Erin Riley, Hiba Schahbaz, Indira Cesarine, Karen Bystedt, KESH, Leah Schrager, Marie Tomanova, Meredith Ostrom, Natalie White, Polly Penrose, Rebecca Dayan, Sarah Maple, and Sophia Wallace.