Portrait of the Artist

Introduction by Laudelina Martinez, Curator

There are all kinds of ways of interpreting self-portraits beyond the issues of representation. I think of the self-portraits by the artists in this group as dealing with subjectivities, an interior life beyond social identity or relationships. Putting aside the current preoccupation with intersectionality, these portraits speak of the artist’s process of arrangement: selecting some elements and discarding or hiding others. They are referential in the way that Gawain’s Green Knight was green inside and out.

On one level, self-portraits speak of visual perception, of presence; on another level, they are the reconstruction of what must be pulled together to be seen as has been taught. In these rhetorical aspects of the visual, landscape functions as metonymy and the human body as the vernacular language. In the final analysis, however we might interpret these works, they awaken our curiosity, may even bring us joy.


-- Hannah Davis, Curatorial Assistant

 

 

The artists' statements below 
were provided by the artists.



Alexandra Higgins

Alexandra Higgins is a landscape and portrait painter as well as a sculptor of exterior works. She has exhibited regionally, taught art, and studied for a Doctor in Arts at SUNY Albany.



Starry Night with Iris (Alone in the Night Sky Portrait), 2019

Oil on Board, 48 x 24"

Price Available Upon Request

 




Anne Hohenstein

Stepping out on a metaphorical limb with this self portrait. Some would say that all our work reduces to a self portrait, just as all the figures in our dreams can be considered parts of us. 




Untitled, 2020

Assemblage, 12" Height

Price Available Upon Request

 

Caren Canier

Most of my work is autobiographical but the paintings are not necessarily likenesses of my head and face in the conventional self-portrait sense.  They are remembered images of family and friends in the places where we live. I am more interested in the interaction between people and the places they inhabit than likeness. 

West Hall IV is part of a series about the Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute campus, where I taught for many years.  The painting is a collage of buildings perched over the Hudson Valley, in a landscape populated with figure sculptures by the sculptor Elie Nadelman.  

I have adopted Nadelman’s figure as my avatar.  The white squirrel actually lived on the RPI campus for many years, serving as a kind of mascot for the School of Architecture. 


West Hall IV, 2012

Mixed Media with Oil on Panel, 11 x 14"

Price Available Upon Request

Canier Continued...


The Forno is about my life as a young mother in an Italian farmhouse. The children and their friends play around an outdoor bread oven - the hearth - that is central to family life.  

The painting is about family, place and the nourishment that we derive from being together at home.


The Forno, 2020

Oil on Panel, 12.5 x 10.75"

Price Available Upon Request

 

Willie Marlowe

My version of a self-portrait is a painted collage with my passport page and a map.  There is a red “X” over the masked photo, a representation of no trips taken in 2020.  This is the first time since 2004 that I have not planned a long trip. Travel has been important to me. After my first residency at the Millay Colony in Austerlitz, NY, I've had international residencies in Italy, The Czech Republic, Croatia, Ireland and The Netherlands. 

I was a visiting artist with solo shows and presentations in Ireland and Croatia.  My work has been part of group exhibitions in cities such as London, Berlin, Taipei, and Sarajevo. I had a solo show in Venice; later some of those paintings were shown in various galleries. Two paintings inspired by Topkapi Palace were in an invitational show in Saratoga Springs, NY.

For many artists who spend long hours in the studio, the lockdown has not altered their work habits, and in some cases made even more studio time available. It has been a reflective and introspective time, but I miss occasional trips out to see art and being with friends.


No Travel: 2020-2021, 2021

Acrylic and Collage on Paper, 10 x 17.25"

Price Available Upon Request

 

Gary Masline

I am very fond of the American Southwest, and carry with me a feeling of loss that I don't spend as much time there as I would prefer.  So, it's perhaps expected that, in death, I'd like my soul/spirit to be good for at least some final fly-bys, though this may be called out in a Zen sense as just further clinging... 


Self-Portrait as Sonoran Spirit, 2019

Oil on Canvas, 16 x 20"

Not Available for Sale

 



Grace Tatara

For me, quarantine meant more time to create art. I once again played with new media. The portrait is a digital drawing. I've been experimenting to recreate my usual abstract mixed media with the use of an iPad and Apple pencil. With some other digital paintings, I've gone on to recreate them with real watercolor. It's been an interesting, new process.


Untitled, 2021

Digital Drawing

Price Available Upon Request

 

Marie Triller

I created this self-portrait photograph last year. It was taken at sunset in Miami, right on the balcony of our brand new home, where the light is ever-changing. 

I chose this image for the exhibition because it represents my life in this new locale. Filled with color, abstraction, and a bit of mystery, it speaks to my new life- one filled with possibilities and discovery.


Untitled, 2021

Archival Digital Print, 12 x 12"

Price Available Upon Request

 

Marie-Louise McHugh

I have painted self-portraits regularly for many years. Some formal, [or] others just drawings or collages. They are fun to do and they fit into the narrative nature of my work. At this point I call them Painted Selfies.


Painted Selfie, 2020

Digital Drawing

Price Available Upon Request

McHugh Continued...


Pandemic Self Portrait, 2020

Gouache on Paper, 9.5 x 9"

Price Available Upon Request

 

Nancy Noble Gardener

Born in Washington, D.C., Nancy graduated Cum Laude from Clark University and the School of the Worcester Art Museum in 1968. She received an MFA from Pratt Institute, with studies in photography, printmaking and Art Therapy. She got a Certificate in Psychotherapy from the Metropolitan Institute, and an MSW from Hunter College. 

Nancy has beena seasonal  resident of Martha’s Vineyard  since 1953. She  travels extensively in Greece, and had  solo exhibitions inAthens, and at The Historical Archives Museum of Hydra, Greece.

Nancy has received numerous awards including Art in the Park in Saratoga (1st Place), the Martha's Vineyard All-Island Art Show (Best in Show and four blue ribbons). She was granted  an Alden Trust Scholarship and an award from the NY Foundation for the Arts. Her work has appeared in publications around the country.

Nancy has contributed her artwork to the Mohawk-Hudson Land conservancy, the Rensselaer Plateau Alliance, The Albany Institute of History and Art, NAMI, Hospice, Martha’s Vineyard Community Services, and other community groups. 


Half Here, 2020

Digital Photograph

Price Available Upon Request

 

George Simmons

The Covid-19 pandemic and subsequent quarantine/lockdown acted like an inward tornado. It spiraled me away from society, away from strangers as they passed by, away from co-workers, shop attendants, friends, family and loved ones. When the disbelief settled…I was left with myself. These self portrait drawings document my emotions and feelings of isolation and uncertainty during this period.


Untitled, 2020

Digital Drawing

Price Available Upon Request

Simmons Continued...


Untitled, 2020

Digital Drawing

Price Available Upon Request

 

Tina Lincer

In the Time of Masks: A sense of ambiguity prevails. There is a weariness to this woman’s expression and also a steadfastness. It won’t be easy, this continued quarantine state, but she'll stay masked for as long as it takes. Though I am a woman of a certain age, this self-portrait has an agelessness about it, with the tangle of curly upturned hair, the mask’s cheerful florals and the robe-like attire (pajamas or blouse?). And, where is she? There’s an emptiness to the landscape yet also a hint of civilization.


In the Time of Masks, 2021

Oil on Canvas, 11 x 14"

Price Available Upon Request

 

Bob Blackmon

In my Self Portrait my reflection is in the green bottle. In quarantine I've been painting more; did 21 pieces in 2020, almost double my normal productivity. I thought '21 was going to be better than '20, but not so far!


Self Portrait, 2020

Oil on Canvas

Price Available Upon Request

 

Barbara Masterson

This self-portrait was created in the early 80's. I was balancing running a home, a young son, ambulance volunteer, teaching in a private school, and continuing my education at SUNY New Paltz. It was a very busy time for me although I continued to make art.


-MA in education from SUNY New Paltz

-Maintains a farm and studio in the Hudson Valley.


Self-Portrait, 1982

Pencil on Paper, 14 x 11"

Price Available Upon Request

 


Dan Mehlman

In response to a call for self-portraits from Martinez Gallery, I sat myself down in front of a mirror and drew this. I was happy for the “assignment” as I had not done a self-portrait in ages. Pencil and chalk on gray paper. 


-Sculptor with BFA from RISD and MA from CSUF

-Freelance designer, mold, and modelmaker in the ceramics and glass industry 

- Studio in Delmar, NY


Untitled, 2020

Graphite and Chalk on Toned Paper, 9 x 8"

Price Available Upon Request

 

Carlos Molina

Carlos N Molina is a Puerto Rican paper artist, graphic designer and activist. He works in both digital and traditional media. His paper sculptures has been exhibited worldwide. Behind his creations, there is always a deeper meaning and a committed pursuit of beauty and celebration of diversity. 

During the COVID-19 pandemic, Molina shared his last exhibited work, The Paper Bag Project in social media. This project reimagined the simple brown bag as a sculptural piece. When someone asked what were they and what one does with them, the obvious answer - It’s art!, somehow wasn’t appropriate. So he wore the piece on his head, took a picture and reposted the sculpture in social media. The response was fantastic, and the series “I wear my art on my head” was born.

Paper Bag with Petals 1, 2021

Paper

18 x 11 x 9"

Price Available Upon Request

 

Roxanna Melendez

Bajo el lenguaje de el realismo mágico, el artista establece un diálogo con su obra.


-Visual Artist born in Puerto Rico

-MSW from Columbia University

-Studied art at Hunter College and The Art Students League

-Maintains studio in New Jersey


Se Parece a Mi? (abstracciones de un autorretrato), 2021

Mixed Media, 40 x 30"

Price Available Upon Request

 

Marilyn Patton

I was challenged by the invitation for this exhibition and immediately I saw this image in my mind. I have been concerned for some time that Tasmania, where I live, struggles to grow into a manufacturing and industrial presence as it decimates its old-growth forests and thus, destroys the habitats for precious endangered species. I am older and do not want to be arrested in demonstrations for the cause, so I look for alternate ways to live my concern. I donate funds to these efforts, and likewise, I have painted my activist dream. If this image is sold, I will also donate these funds to the cause!


My Secret Life: Defender of  Old Growth Forests, 2020

Mixed Media, 22.5 x 15.5"

Price Available Upon Request

 

Gary Shankman

I just thought, it has been more than 40 years since I painted a figure. However, there are many landscapes I feel close to. I'd be happy to have any of them in the show.


-MFA from American University

-Retired Full Professor in painting at The Sage Colleges 

-Smithsonian Institution Summer professor

-Studio in Albany, NY


The Arbor, 2016

Oil on Linen, 8 x 10"

Price Available Upon Request

 

Emma Chan

Expression of independence through fashion during a time of uncertainty. 

In this piece, my goal was to capture self change and self reflection. Using fashion as a vehicle to express who I am. I painted a new version of myself that has emerged from these trying times. I’ve acknowledged the person I’ve become and this artwork is all about respecting that.

Adolescent Transition, 2021

Acrylic on Canvas, 20 x 16"

Price Available Upon Request

Chan Continued...


Seeing the world through different lenses from the outside and the inside in 2020. Chaos, Fear, Death, Violence, Sadness, Uncertainty, Scared, Unknown, Confusion, Isolation. 

This piece is about the past year. The red represents the increased amount of losses throughout 2020 at the hands of Covid-19. The eyes are looking into the future, hoping for a better year and an end to this virus. 


Life, 2021

Acrylic on Canvas, 9 x 12"

Price Available Upon Request

 

 

Tell us what thoughts or feelings this exhibition brought you.


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