A Little Tenderness at Gildar Gallery

Artists: Ana Benaroya, Molly Bounds, Dominic Chambers, Anthony Cudahy, Caleb Hahne, Rebecca Ness, Maja Ruznic

Exhibition title: A Little Tenderness

Venue: Gildar Gallery, Denver, US

Date: March 7 – April 6, 2019

Photography: all images copyright and courtesy of the artists and Gildar Gallery, Denver

Gildar Gallery is pleased to share A Little Tenderness, a group exhibition featuring seven contemporary painters touching on current complexities in depicting intimate figures.

Despite the familiar packaging of Hallmark cards, romantic comedies and other arms of the romance industry, intimacy is not necessarily bound to a happy ending. The want for and achievement of closeness with other people allows for a range of simultaneous experience. Love, comfort and affection share the boudoir with consuming desire, loss of self in another, the stark awareness of ones own isolation and of course jealousy to name a few outcomes. These results of a need for closeness are not mutually exclusive, as anyone can attest who has ever felt the pangs of loneliness in the midst of a ‘good’ relationship or say a deeply felt bond to a terrorizing lover in a ‘bad’ one.

Painting feels a fitting medium to expose these ranging experiences given its own relationship to the paradox of seeking connection. Since the first person smeared pigment on a rock face, painters have tried to communicate the self to an audience through the highly personal extension of touch. At the same time, commitment to countless hours of solitude developing a language to effectively communicate through the medium can atrophy the very social impulses to reach out and be seen by others.

The painters in A Little Tenderness each approach their subjects and surfaces with variation in technique while sharing a tendency to blend elements of the autobiographical with the fictional and fantastic. Indebted to painters like John Currin and Lisa Yuskavage with an eye towards looking at societal norms through exaggerated figurative relationships, these artist’s burn warmer towards sincerity over distanced irony and analysis. Perhaps this is generational. As Victorian era social divisions continue to dissolve, with distinctions between public and private, the rational and irrational, gender and sexuality incrementally blurring into ever broader spectrums, questions of intimacy, particularly who is allowed to experience it and at what cost, are also perhaps softening, in this case a brush stroke at a time.

A Little Tenderness, 2019, exhibition view, Gildar Gallery, Denver

A Little Tenderness, 2019, exhibition view, Gildar Gallery, Denver

A Little Tenderness, 2019, exhibition view, Gildar Gallery, Denver

A Little Tenderness, 2019, exhibition view, Gildar Gallery, Denver

A Little Tenderness, 2019, exhibition view, Gildar Gallery, Denver

A Little Tenderness, 2019, exhibition view, Gildar Gallery, Denver

A Little Tenderness, 2019, exhibition view, Gildar Gallery, Denver

A Little Tenderness, 2019, exhibition view, Gildar Gallery, Denver

A Little Tenderness, 2019, exhibition view, Gildar Gallery, Denver

A Little Tenderness, 2019, exhibition view, Gildar Gallery, Denver

A Little Tenderness, 2019, exhibition view, Gildar Gallery, Denver

A Little Tenderness, 2019, exhibition view, Gildar Gallery, Denver

Ana Benaroya, Cross-Eyed, 2019, Spray paint, acrylic and oil on canvas, 20 x 24 in (50.8 x 61 cm)

Ana Benaroya, Close To My Heart, 2019, Oil on canvas, 36 x 48 in (91.4 x 121.9 cm)

Molly Bounds, Luxury, 2019, Acrylic and oil on canvas, 22 x 26 in (55.9 x 66 cm)

Dominic Chambers, Veil Curtain 4, 2019, Oil, charcoal and spray paint on canvas over panel, 20 x 16 in (50.8 x 40.6 cm)

Anthony Cudahy, Waiting, 2019, Acrylic and oil on canvas, 54 x 24 in (137.2 x 61 cm)

Anthony Cudahy, Night Lurker iii, 2019, Oil on panel, 30 x 24 in (76.2 x 61 cm)

Caleb Hahne, Closer, 2019, Acrylic, gouache, paste and oil on canvas, 12 x 14 in (30.5 x 35.6 cm)

Rebecca Ness, Rug Store, 2019, Oil on canvas, 70 x 60 in (177.8 x 152.4 cm)

Rebecca Ness, On Top, 2019, Oil on linen mounted on panel, 12 x 9 in (30.5 x 22.9 cm)

Maja Ruznic, Grave Diggers, 2018, Oil on canvas, 45 x 36 in (114.3 x 91.4 cm)

Maja Ruznic, Love Letters to Tomorrows Ghosts, 2018, Oil on canvas, 49 x 41 in (124.5 x 104.1 cm)

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