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Six Artists Explore Portraiture in Pelham Art Center Exhibition

"Self Portrait (White Wall, No Shirt)" by John Mitchell

Pelham Art Center explores the art of portraiture in its latest exhibition, Near to You. The group exhibition, on view through March 24, features the portraits of six artists who share their challenging approaches to the genre. Works on view will ask the viewers to contemplate whether portraits reveal the true identity of its subject or simply capture a fleeting truth. Exhibiting artist Jenny Dubnau uses photographs as a reference for her portraits and self-portraits, and captures the covert facial expressions that may confirm the subject’s real feelings or actual circumstances. In Tim Doud’s Blue, a series of 30-by-22-inch self-portraits, painted over a four-year period, are compiled into a grid. In each portrait, the artist strikes the same pose in similar blue shirts and eye-wear. This is meant to perplex the viewer and their conclusions about his true emotions. Spontaneous colorful, abstract figures weave through Julia Schwartz’s paintings to demonstrate a person’s darker psychological states. Donna Festa creates small oil paintings and sculptures of elderly people that provide narratives on the inevitable aspects of the human condition. John Mitchell makes his physical presence the focus of his traditional self-portrait. Distorted women populate Heather Morgan’s theatrical, pastel portraits, which illustrate that beauty can be flawed and damaged. For more info, visit pelhamartcenter.org.

A version of this article first appeared in the February issue of ArtsNews, ArtsWestchester’s monthly publication. ArtsNews is distributed throughout Westchester County. A digital copy is also available at artsw.org/artsnews

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