I make large-scale figurative work that's informed by a classical painterly aesthetic. My work is about the experience of sexuality, the female gaze, gender, pleasure and beauty, and biological processes unique to the female body. I recognize painting as a medium that historically has been used to reinforce communal values and illustrate the Ideal. With this in mind I view painting as a means of social change. By portraying these under-represented concepts within a conventional aesthetic framework I attempt to enter them into public dialogue, and ultimately to de-stigmatize, exalt, and canonize them. I have connections of varying degrees with all of my models. Lovers, studio mates, fellow painters, close friends, and acquaintances appear in my work. As each sitting blooms, the complex and often hazy relationship between artist and model emerges. A subtle give and take is established; each model has volition and our relationship is transmitted to the finished painting.
Kelsey Shwetz (b.1986) is a Canadian-born painter, co-founder of Studio 200 gallery in Chelsea, member of the NYC-based painting collective BLONDE, and Exhibitions Director of Bushwick Art Crit Group in Brooklyn. Shwetz has recently exhibited at Galerie Burkhard Eickelmann in Dusseldorf, Germany; Art.Fair in Cologne, Germany; Select Fair at Art Basel Miami and Frieze Week NYC; Metropolitan Plaza, Gallery Sensei, and GalleryBar in NYC, USA; Steuben South Gallery, Greenpoint Gallery, and C.C.C.P. Gallery in Brooklyn, USA; The Kinsey Institute in Indiana, USA; 114 Boulevard Saint-Germain in Paris, France; Galerie Bambu in Jaco, Costa Rica; the Belgo Building and Studio 10King in Montreal, Canada; and INDEXG in Toronto, Canada. Shwetz was awarded support stipends at Starry Night Residency (USA), Can Serrat Residency (Spain), and Anant Residency (India). Her work has been featured in Lip Magazine (Australia); Tjen Folket (Norway); the Globe and Mail and Sustenance (Canada), and Whitehot Magazine, Posture Magazine, Flavorwire, and the New York Manhattan Examiner (USA). Shwetz received a BA Honours in Psychology and Painting from the University of Manitoba in 2009. She currently lives and works in Brooklyn, NY.
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