friday, february 04, 2011
February 2011 at the Pennsylvania Academy: Pictures of the Body

I am deeply honored to be included in this exhibition. Curators Robert Cozzolino and Julien Robson have touched upon a most salient concept and context in which to present this work and I am frankly thrilled to be counted among some of my heroes in modern and contemporary figurative art.

Pictures of the Body

Location: The Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, Philadelphia, PA, USA.
February 5 - April 10, 2011
Robert Cozzolino, Curator of Modern Art
Julien Robson, Curator of Contemporary Art

While artists in the past explored and recorded the body as a means of understanding its structure and operation, in recent decades contemporary artists have increasingly employed representations of the body as a means to address issues about the nature of the self and subjective identity. This installation drawn primarily from PAFA’s permanent collection brings together over 30 works that reveal the innumerable ways that artists have focused on the human body since the 1950s. In contrast to the earlier academic concern with anatomy as a source of verifiable visual knowledge, this renewed interest in the body employs anatomical and medical imagery for differing philosophical ends. Understanding that the body is not a singular anatomical entity but is layered into a complex socio-political, scientific, and cultural network, contemporary artists now employ the human form in their work as a way of engaging questions about unity, fragmentation, and the mediation of the body in contemporary society.

Artists featured in this installation include: Sue Coe, Rafael Ferrer, Gregory Gillespie, Sidney Goodman, Jenny Kanzler, Jules Kirschenbaum, Paul Lamantia, Philip Pearlstein, Paul Pletka, Honoré Sharrer, TODT, John Wilde, Richard Wilt and others.

Image: 'Gastromancy II," Michael Shelby Edwards, charcoal and graphite on rag paper, 2008.

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