This winter Pentimenti Gallery presents the work of six outstanding student artists for the group exhibition "It is Here, It is Now, I am".
“My current work investigates perceptions of time and the parallel between how history is written and subjective experience: how our context, such as our memories and culture, informs the complexity of who we are and how we interpret our world. Each of the memory segments in my work are composed like sentences in my handwriting. Every action becomes a description of as much or as little detail as I had retained in memory, the spaces left between fragments are as significant as the segments rendered. The narratives I record are less a story to be read and deciphered by a viewer than it is meant to be a sublime experience of simultaneous complexity and ephemerality, the use of my own memory only serves as a representation for anyone's existence.” Kaitlyn Basta received her BFA in Painting at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts. Her work has been exhibited at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts Museum, Philadelphia, PA; Works on Paper Gallery, Philadelphia, PA; Artist House Gallery, Philadelphia, PA; and more. She has received numerous awards and mentions including The Gross McLeaf Gallery Prize (2016); Simone C. Titone Prize (2016); The Sylvia G. Wexler Memorial Award (2016); among others.
“My works on paper are driven by a psychological impulse that reflects the angst of our contemporary times. Representing fragments of thoughts, feelings, or sensations, my drawings are provisional and ephemeral, the realization of a moment or the residue of a day. Some are analogous to a single word or utterance and others – often diptychs or triptychs – resemble excerpts from a longer narrative.” Rita Bernstein received her BA from Barnard College, Columbia University and is pursuing her MFA at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts. Her work has been exhibited at museums and institutions such as the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, Philadelphia, PA; Griffin Museum of Photography, Winchester, MA; Rye Arts Center, Rye, NY; University of the Arts, Philadelphia, PA; The Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, Houston, TX; Philadelphia Museum of Art, Philadelphia, PA; New York University, New York, NY; Perkins Center for the Arts, Moorestown, NJ; University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA; Noyes Museum of Art, Oceanville, NJ; among others. Her work is held in numerous collections including the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts; Philadelphia Museum of Art; Museum of Fine Arts, Houston; University of Michigan Museum of Art; Woodmere Art Museum; among others.
“Mesmerized by materials objects. High end fashion, rare metals and stones, even condos in a lustrous skyscraper. Things that are sought after or seem to be sought after. I am interested in the fixation that comes from the desire of lavish material items and the dislocation of these creative subcultures original place. I am questioning our instinctual attraction to ‘Shiny’ objects and its relationship to the desire and temptation of a materialistic nature.” Noah Kashiani received his BA from the University of Mount Union and is pursuing his MFA at Northern Illinois University. His work has been exhibited at Northern Illinois University, Dekalb, IL; California Institute of the Arts, Santa Clarita, CA; Kishwaukee College, Malta, IL; University of Mount Union, Alliance, OH; among others. He has received several awards and residencies such as the Joya Artist in Residence, Velez Blanco, Spain (2018); Artist in Residence, California Institute of the Arts, Santa Clarita, CA (2015); among others. His work is found in numerous private collections across the US and in Holland.
“Distant memories of the working farm in Michigan where I grew up inform the visual language of my paintings. Hand-hewn wood beams, golden wheat fields, and coming-of-age narratives are all mapped and compartmentalized in these large-scale abstractions, generating meditations of the rural. In the years I spent on the farm, I learned about nurturing nature, self-sufficiency, and survival. The barn becomes a symbol that harbors hope, stores energy, and holds a history.” Michael Kondel received his BFA from SUNY Purchase and is pursuing his MFA at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts. His work has been exhibited at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, Philadelphia, PA; Delaware Community College, Media, PA; Temple University, Philadelphia, PA; Lafayette College, Easton, PA; ISE Cultural Foundation, New York, NY; Rockland Center for the Arts, West Nyack, NY; among others.
“I use the senses of observation and memory to structure small paintings that become containers of place. Abstract mapping language of icons and pattern play against the familiar and the representational, in order assimilate the best design of the place’s character. As a space is transferred to this new form, it distorts, folds, and transforms, rendering an alternative space that becomes an idealized entity. I am interested in how these paintings can become portals to a new invented world, while still maintaining themselves as objects that contain the essence of the real place that spurned their creation. In these new spaces, confusion can become play, and unease can become refuge.” Zachary Simonson is pursuing his MFA at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts. His work has been exhibited at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, Philadelphia, PA; Esther Klein Gallery, Philadelphia, PA; University of Wisconsin-Whitewater, Whitewater, WI.
“My most recent works are exercises in confirmation bias. I give the viewer permission to see what they want or need to see in the resulting images. This dissonance between experiential evidence (that two people can share a moment but come away with completely different interpretation of events) is reflected through layers of various drawing materials and light reflective materials that transform as the viewer’s position to the work changes. There is an activation of the art through movement.” Sam Whalen received her BFA from Cornish College of the Arts and is pursuing her MFA at the University of Delaware. Her work has been exhibited at The Delaware Contemporary, Wilmington, DE; University of Delaware, Newark, DE; Seattle University, Seattle, WA; Cornish College of the Arts; among others. She has received numerous awards, grants and fellowships such as the Magness Award, Department of Art & Design, University of Delaware (2018).