Nancy Margolis Gallery is pleased to announce Aubrey Levinthal’s first solo exhibition at the gallery will open Thursday, September 7 and continue through October 14, 2017. The artist reception will be Thursday, September 7, 6pm to 8pm.
Aubrey Levinthal is a still life and figurative painter living and working in Philadelphia. At a glance, Aubrey Levinthal’s paintings appear to be simple translations of the everyday moments we all experience in the course of our daily lives. These brief moments, whether ephemeral or banal, are applauded and elevated by the artist. Levinthal understands that the commonplace has its own beauty, and no matter how inconsequential, it is embraced in the paintings and remains important. Each of Levinthal paintings articulates one of these moments, providing her a rich trove of material to extract from her own life. Winter Bath, 2016, and Election Night, 2017, examples of the narratives she paints, poignantly express her observations about herself as she retreats into solitude and thought. We observe a figure soaking in a lusciously warm bath, and relate to the deep pleasure she feels, and equally empathize as she rests on the couch appearing sad after learning disappointing news about an election. Levinthal in these moments unveils her own emotions, and allows us to view the world from her vantage point, but also from our own as well.
Levinthal’s paintings are more than the depiction of a series of moments from her daily life. Equally important to the power of these paintings is how the artist juxtaposes color, texture, decoration, form, and composition within the paintings. She measures carefully what to show and how to do it.
Flower Bath, 2017 and Banana Shopping, 2017 differ from her other paintings, in that it is the design element that dominates. In Flower Bath bold Marimekko floral prints embellish the wall behind the seated figure in the frontal plane of the painting, reminiscent of Matisse’s magical cutouts made later in life. This work explores minimalism, abstraction, and changing planes, emphasizing once again her contemporary identity and independent choices. The gorgeous golden bananas and the large floral print is what catches your eye first, and is the lure that pulls you in rather than a narrative as occurs in other paintings.
Levinthal’s paintings are about feeling, family, and living in the real world. She confronts familial interaction and varied accompanying emotions simply and directly. She freely and openly without apology allows us to view the intimate and personal exchanges in her own life which, in turn, provokes us to examine and confront them in our own. The everyday fleeting moments delivered in her paintings convey with humor, freshness, and reflection a great deal about this artist, and the life she lives.
Aubrey Levinthal received an MFA from the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts in 2011. She has participated in numerous exhibitions including recent group shows at NOVELLA Gallery NY, Queens College Art Center NY, and Mrs. Gallery. In Philadelphia, recent group shows include the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts Museum, Woodmere Art Museum, and the University of the Arts. Her January 2016 solo exhibition at Gross McCleaf Gallery was reviewed in the Philadelphia Inquirer. Her work has been featured in ARTnews, the NYSUN, Harper’s Magazine and New American Paintings. Levinthal is an assistant professor at Rowan University. She has also taught at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts and has been a visiting artist at the University of Virginia, Millersville University and Woodmere Art Museum. Levinthal is the recent recipient of her second Elizabeth Greenshields Foundation grant which funded her solo show at the Painting Center, NY in January 2017 and a residency at Ballinglen Arts Foundation in County Mayo, Ireland in May 2017.
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