NEW YORK, NY.- The New York Academy of Art
will present an exhibition of painting and sculpture by the 2013 Academy Fellows Jonathan Beer, Aleah Chapin, and Nicolas Holiber. The show presents a powerful case for deeply-informed, conceptually based figurative art and showcases three of the infinite interpretations of the Academys education in practice. The exhibition opens on Tuesday, September 3rd, with a reception from 6:00-8:00pm. An Artists Conversation moderated by artist and blogger Daniel Maidman will take place on Tuesday, September 10th, at 6:30pm. The show will remain on view through Sunday, September 29th at the Academys Wilkinson Gallery, 111 Franklin Street in New York City.
Jonathan Beers paintings are visual conundrums that unexpectedly reconstruct meaning from the Post-Modern morass. Seductive and informed, they take off from simulation and appropriation strategies but return to the viewer with solutions to the end game tactics of the Pictures Generation. Rather than neutralize imagery through unexpected juxtapositions, Beers paintings are openly suggestive with personal and cultural references that reinvigorate the practice of painting. The doors are wide open in his work, allowing him to sample from art history, popular culture and his own tireless imagination.
Aleah Chapin lovingly paints the women from her hometown who have shaped her life. Naked, vulnerable and raw, they pose confidently when most people feverishly hide their imperfections. In groups, these women are bonding, hiding, laughing, oblivious and self-conscious. Every square inch of their flesh is rendered with the care one takes when massaging a loved ones hands. The sheer beauty of these paintings reinforces the underlying proposition that all of these women are, indeed, unexpectedly gorgeous.
Nicolas Holiber is a scavenger and an art cannibal. His studio process is one of creation and destruction. He fashions horrible, homunculi-like characters who somehow elicit feelings of sympathy from his viewers. These figures are made from cast-offs, the urban flotsam and jetsam that the rest of us overlook every day. They are all beautiful and repugnant, exquisitely crafted and crude, dumb and potentially dangerous. They are regal when they wear crowns, embarrassing when their teeth fall out, impotent when they sprout thorns and a bit like you and me.
Annually, the Academy awards three exemplary graduating students a post graduate fellowship through a highly competitive selection process. Fellowships include studio accommodations, an annual stipend, exhibition opportunities and teaching assistantships to further deepen their artistic practice. Current Fellow Aleah Chapin was first prize winner of the National Portrait Galleys BP Portrait Award in 2012, the second American to win the prestigious prize. Previous fellowship recipients include: Ali Banisadr, Fellow 2009 (Galerie Thaddaeus Ropac, Metropolitan Museum of Art); Amy Bennett, Fellow 2003 (Richard Heller Gallery, Metropolitan Museum of Art); Will Kurtz, Fellow 2010 (Mike Weiss Gallery); Jean-Pierre Roy, Fellow 2003 (Marc Moore Gallery); Phillip Thomas, Fellow 2009 (Richard J. Demato Gallery, permanent collection of The World Bank) and Helen Verhoeven, Fellow 2002 (Wallspace).