Robert Mann Gallery is pleased to present In Her Hands, a group show curated by Orly Cogan and Julie Peppito. This exhibition comes at a unique and timely period in history. Women in art and politics find themselves on parallel roads facing the urgent need to assert that we are all connected and embrace empowerment over traditional male systems of dominant power, where all humans regardless of gender, race or class will benefit.
This exhibition will focus on combining craft materials, that define the powerful domestic history of feminine art forms, with portraits of progressive women candidates who are running in the 2018 elections, including Cynthia Nixon, Elizabeth Warren and Maxine Waters. Cogan and Peppito understand that “by curating a show that elevates women in art and politics, it asserts that women’s work, which has historically referred to undervalued activities like cooking, child care and sewing, are extremely valuable but are also only a part of what women’s work means today.” Conceptually the show inspires female artists to create work that highlights other women who are working to advance their communities, their country, and the world by opposing the patriarchal system that typically uses force, domination, and division to exert control.
Among the fifteen artists, Alice Beasley uses her quilting to express her pride for strong courageous woman in politics championing progressive causes that benefits their community and support those struggling to have their voices heard. Maria De Los Angeles, a DACA recipient whose future is directly affected by what happens in our political system, shows how participation in social change comes in different forms. For her, creating something beautiful, informing and educating the audience is her way of participating in the conversation given that she does not have the right to vote in the United States. Jane Waggoner Deschner’s work stitches together snapshots that provide insight into the life of a candidate, which normally seems so far removed from ones own because of a modern day culture that is plagued by surface level headlines. She reminds the viewer of our shared humanity through found family photographs and hand-embroidered quotations that show we are more alike than different.
With an exhibition that empowers both female artists and candidates in the moment of #metoo, #timesup, and #blacklivesmatter, In Her Hands is a reflection of the rise of women voices around the world that exemplifies the inclusiveness of true feminist power, and that it is most definitely, here to stay.
Orly Cogan, born in Jaffa, Israel, has been at the forefront of the fiber arts movement using mediums including embroidery, painting, and drawing creating work that explores feminism, domesticity, and the constantly changing role of women in society. She studied at The Cooper Union and received her BFA from The Maryland Institute College of Art. Julie Peppito, born in Oklahoma, combines three-dimensional collage, quilts, botanical illustration and Americana that blurs the traditional boundaries between high and low art. She received her BFA from The Cooper Union and MFA from Alfred University.
In Her Hands features work by Alice Beasley, Orly Cogan, Laurel Garcia Colvin, Maria De Los Angeles, Jane Waggoner Deschner, Susan Graham, Kate Kretz, Jess Larson, Diane Mayer, Marilyn Mcbrier Artus, Julie Peppito, Leisa Rich, Alicia Ross, Rebecca Siemering, Melissa Zexter