Heather Morgan describes her work as being “recognizable for sumptuous self-portraits and figure paintings that vibrate between an intimate vulnerability and potent self-possession.” These gestural self portraits are commanding, honest works that depict a fierce, passionate, yet vulnerable individual. She has had solo shows at Jack the Pelican in New York City and at Ladengalerie in Berlin and group exhibitions at Steven Harvey Fine Arts and David & Schweitzer Contemporary, among others. Morgan has also been featured in several highly regarded art publications, such as ArtFuse, Hyperallergic, Manhattan Times, BOMB, Hyperallergic and Whitehot. She received her Bachelor of Fine Arts from Boston University and Master of Fine Arts from Yale.
Diana Schmertz is “interested in the systems people create in order to organize what they perceive in the world around them.” In her work, the fragmentation of the moments of contact lends ambiguity to both the pictorial space and to the boundary between the people portrayed. The viewer is given partial views of the human body that challenge perception of what is known and unknown. Schmertz has had solo shows in galleries such as the Russ Berrie Gallery Space at Columbia University, and group exhibitions at Montclair Art Museum and NoMAA Gallery. She received a Master of Science in Art Education and a Master of Science in Art Therapy from the
College of New Rochelle, and a Bachelor of Fine Arts from SUNY Purchase. She has also been featured in prestigious art publications such as ArtFuse, Hyperallergic and Manhattan Times. Michelle Doll’s intimate paintings of couples came about from the artist’s attraction to the physical and metaphysical energy that can exist between two individuals. Depictions of these intimate connections pull the viewer into the moments of the balance of inner peace and harmony. When one considers all the noise that exists and contemporary cultural constructs that aim cheapen relationships to the lowest common denominator, these works offer hope and quietly put us on notice to be mindful of what we may be missing, or blessed with if fortunate enough.
Michelle Doll has been featured in solo exhibitions at Lyons Wier Gallery, in New York, Pontone Gallery in London and Blank Space Gallery in New York and group shows at Sotheby’s and Fuse Gallery, to name a few. Doll received a Bachelor of Fine Arts from Kent State University and a Master of Fine Arts Education from the New York Academy of Art.
Stefania Panepinto is an artist and art advisor living in Jersey City. For “Leveling” Panepinto has created the “Strength in Numbers: Empowered Women Series,” depicting seven women who empower and transform themselves as well as other women locally and world-wide. For this body of work, Panepinto chose women with whom she has had a long-lasting connection, often going as far back as her early childhood. The portraits are on her trademark blue background, reminiscent of Amy Sherald’s portrait of Michelle Obama. Panepinto has participated in group exhibitions at Wilkinson Gallery at the New York Academy of Art, Sotheby’s and Six Summit Gallery, among others. She earned a Bachelor of Science in Animal Science from Rutgers University and a Master of Fine Arts from the New York Academy of Art.
Charlotta Janssen paints with teal, white, black and utilizes a rust technique with collaged elements making her work as bold and vibrant as the iconic personalities featured in her paintings. Previously, Janssen had completed a powerful series of nationally exhibited works based on The Freedom Riders and the Civil Rights Movement. The works slated for exhibition in “Leveling” are a new series, “We Didn’t Come Here to be Pretty”, depicting the dignified, determined, and often overlooked women of 20th century America. The work is a reflex, a push-back against projections and artificial constructs of “polite” society and showing what should really be celebrated: who these capable women really were, and how they carved out a place for themselves. Most of the women depicted are no longer living, but their contemporary importance and inspiration have not been lost.
Janssen attended the University of the Arts (HDK) in Berlin, Germany. She has been featured in solo exhibitions at the National Civil Rights Museum and East West Gallery in Italy and group shows at Art Basel. A former model, Janssen was recently interviewed on BBC Television as part of the “Me Too” movement.
Jennifer Watson’s meticulously painted work often utilizes depictions of a Barbie Doll-like Avatar. There is a detachment in the work, effectively keeping the viewer at an emotional distance, while the paintings are gorgeously painted in playful jewel tones. The work is spot-on in cool representations of disengagement, a mirror to the idealized online portrayals of selling perfection. Watson’s Avatar effectively, “questions physical form and beauty influenced by mass culture, advertisements”. Watson’s work has been featured in numerous notable publications, including: ARTnews, “Endless Summer Review”, Huffington Post, “Artists Transform Vacant Office Building Into Surreal Artistic Wonderland” and Hyperallergic, “An Abandoned Cubicle Complex Filled with Art”. The artist maintains a studio in Newark, New Jersey.